On [Not] Keeping Score

October 8, 2012

Not too long ago, I had this really bad habit of keeping score. Here's what I mean. In my head I kept a running list of all the stressful events that had occurred in my life over the past five years or so. It was a breathtaking list, too, that involved moving out of state twice, dealing with a major death in the family, buying a house and undergoing therapy for nerve pain. Anytime anyone asked about my life or my stress level, they got a full rundown of the list. In detail.

Surely no one else had endured so much stress in such a small space of time. It was almost like a competition: look how crazy my life is! Or maybe, I hesitate to admit, it was a plea for sympathy or attention.

I used the list to justify bad attitudes and reactions to stress. I used it to assure myself that I was doing ok...under the circumstances. I used it as a cosmic scorecard. Ok, I've had my fill of stress now. Time for a break. 

Then I miscarried. I started to add the event to the list. And then, I started thinking: Why am I even keeping this list? 

Why don't I have a corresponding list in my head of great memories I've made over the past 5 years?

Why don't I tell people about all the cute stuff William has said and done?

Why can't I remember half the cute stuff he's said and done??

Why am I always complaining and painting a tragic picture of my life?

See, right after the miscarriage, I had a dream. One of those realistic dreams that wake you up from sleep. In this dream, I was wearing my wedding dress at some kind of event. Calvin was in a suit. And we were spinning across the floor, dancing and laughing. Carefree. Obviously deeply in love.

I was watching myself from the sidelines. Watching that young woman I was with the glowing eyes and beaming smile. She looked at me as she whirled by, so young, so beautiful. She said something to me as she passed. I'm not sure what it was. But I think it may have been, "Look at what you have."

So I did. And I discovered something. I have so much. Not just food on the table or cars in the driveway. I have the love of my life right here with me. I have a wonderful child with this man. I have a heart that's full of love and peace. Enduring a parade of stressful situations has been worth every minute I get to spend with these people I adore. I have no reason to keep score.

So I'm throwing away the scorecard. No more complaining. No more dwelling on the past. I need room in my head for all the great memories we're making.  

1 comment:

Shannon said...

What a great epiphany! I need to remember to do this also!!♥

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