You guys, I have awesome news. According to this guy, things are only getting better. All the things. He says, we will do better when tested on our understanding of the world if we will assume that basically things are improving and that the worst thing we know or imagine, actually isn’t that common. I’m in. You should watch the video; you’ll be in, too.
If we all watch the video, you never know what could happen. My dad has said to me that the state of things actually tends to follow our belief about the state of things. Our collective belief about the state of the economy shapes whether or not we will spend. When we worry, we stop spending, after which we see stores folding and businesses going under. Boom – we believed the economy was scary, then we made it so. It makes me wonder what would happen if we all believed something better.
I haven’t blogged much lately. I had myself on a self-imposed deadline with some other writing. So here’s what you’ve missed while I was away: Emotions. All over the place. My boys started school – one of them is in high school now, and for the first time since the first time I had children in school, I realize my heart just left my body. It’s in those three school buildings all day, on the football field at night. It goes to the Christian youth program they are part of and with them to the movie nights at another parent’s home. I never noticed how easy things feel when they are practically within arm’s length all day long during the summer and then how wonderfully painful it is to release them into the influence of a thousand other things once school begins again. I noticed this year, though. I haven’t recovered yet.
So far, they have thrown touchdown passes, been honored as Student of the Month, and almost beat the record for the mile in third grade. They have good friends – great friends. They are respected and loved. They like their teachers. They love their youth group leaders. They are part of the start-up for a young men’s singing group. And they escorted a homecoming candidate for queen. It’s going fine. And still, I can hardly take the heartache of the good and the bad and all this growing up that’s happening around me.
Elizabeth Gilbert has said that as far as her subconscious is concerned, great success and great failure feel exactly the same. They are each a similar absolute value from normal, an equal distance from home.
I’ve been obsessed with home since the first time I noticed the white house with green shutters in Edina, Missouri, and dreamed of living in it one day. Even when I come home from work exhausted, I find absolute joy in washing a sheet or straightening the kitchen. Somehow, I know that if I can make things peaceful here, it will matter when we scatter to the thousand other places we want to be.
Home is where we live. It’s the between place, the zero-absolute-value from normal. Life sometimes feels like a series of heartaches and triumphs, but there actually is a lot of time between. It’s really pretty easy to focus during the highs and the lows. All we can think about is the thing at hand and what it means for us, and how we will live in it. But maybe between the highs and lows, we should focus even more. We should build the between place with all the things that fix us, all the people that make life better, all the love and gratitude and positivity we can muster. Then it’s there for us, strong and beautiful, every time we come home.
That’s my master plan. Believe the best. And always, always come home.