Every week when I sit down to write this post, I open up my Flickr page to remind myself of what made me happy; I tend to record happiness in the moment through photos. But today I stopped myself just as the new tab was loading and thought “are only the photogenic life events worthy of gratitude?”
Actually, in my brain it probably sounded more like, “um, you might be missing the point.”
So I sat back for a moment and asked myself what I am most immediately thankful for right now.
He isn’t always the first thing to come to mind. Like two people in any relationship, we are in constant motion and sometimes that means we’re going towards each other and other weeks we seem to be moving away. This week was one of coming back to the common middle, of reconnecting and laughing.
This week we slipped out of the house together a couple of times, once to share a waffle smothered in ice cream and another to dig through other people’s junk. This week I watched him excel as a parent, and at the exact moment when I and his son needed him to. This week he decided to drive home through the park at the last minute, “so you can see the leaves changing.”
It didn’t occur to me to capture that bobbing and weaving back together in a photo.
I did, however, manage to snap a shot of him finally finding an available Twitter handle. How freaking adorable is he? Very.
My other happiness highlights this week included another trip to PNC Park, this time with my friend Eileen.
Eileen shared one of her season tickets with me and introduced me to her section mates and fellow Pirates fans. She let me hug her when McCutchen hit a much-overdue home run to win the game. She also sang along to Lifehouse during the concert after the game, which endeared her to me even more. On the ride home, she listened to me babble about my childhood and my theories on parenting, and she shared some of her own history with me. The more time I spend with Eileen, the more I like her.
Sunday, Jared and Becky went to another baseball game (I think they might be dating) while I took the kids to the Carnegie Museums of Art and National History (more RADical Days freebies.)
My kids are surprisingly fun to take to museums because they are interesting people. They look at things, read signs and form opinions of their own. Devin and I talked about how Monet’s Water Lillies make him feel sad and make me feel dreamy. Emma noted that a lot of people try to paint like Picasso, and that she also uses bright colors and abstract shapes in her own paintings.
At lunch, we giggled over our noodle plates and crab ragoons. Devin swapped plates with me when I realized pork and shrimp wontons sounded better than they tasted. We shared a round of fist bumps after realizing we had two of our $27 left after paying the bill and leaving a tip. I love it when they are both acting like they like each other and me.
“I enjoyed that more than I thought I would,” Devin admitted afterwards, and I instantly tucked that away into my heart to carry me through the next tween outbreak of foot stomping, eye rolling and insistence that he is not being rude.
My happiness this week came from spending time nurturing relationships. Where did you find your moments of joy and peace?
I take the time to highlight what made me happy each week because gratitude is the root of all happiness. I encourage you to develop your own gratitude practice; I wholeheartedly believe it will change your life.