Sunday, March 2, 2008


We don't pray at bedtime in our house, but last night as I tucked Sprout into bed he said, "I love my mommy. I love my daddy. I love [aka Pip]. I love [daycare provider] L. I love Bella [cat one]. I love Cinderalla [cat two]. I love my family. I love my bed. I love my house. I love my pillows." If that is not a prayer of thanks and gratitude, I don't know what is.

Lately I had been consumed by the Wanna-Haves, not the Wanna-Greenies. I think part of it comes from living in such an affluent area and having [seemingly] affluent friends. They've never made me feel inferior, of course! That's not what I mean. But in subtle ways I know that we are living slightly below their income level! I also had been suffering from a bad case of the dreaded Grass is Always Greener syndrome. I work part-time; I want to work more part-time. I live in this city; I want to live in that city. I want to get a new job; I want to be a SAHM. I painted the living room Beeswax; I want to paint it Celery. And on and on and on. I am, however, pleased to announce that I have never wished for different children or for a different husband. ;)

I speak about the Wanna-Haves and the GIAG in the past tense because lately these thoughts have almost entirely disappeared. Don't get me wrong - I still oogle over the Ikea catalog and the thought of complete and total SAHM-dom, health insurance be damned, does flicker across my brain, but I have spent a peaceful weekend, if not one marked by sadness, enjoying what I have been given.

Here are a few links that have inspired me this past week.

Sara Janssen's photo sets that show you don't have to have a lot of space, things, or money to make a beautiful home.

A beautiful traditional Swedish song, Uti Vaar Hage that I first learned about by reading Heart's Delight by Per Nilsson.

As always, my favorite poem "Locking Yourself Out, Then Trying to Get Back In" by Raymond Carver.

And finally, Mary Beth at Salt and Chocolate, who is suffering along with her son, who inspires me by being such a wonderful mother. Mary Beth, even in these hard times, as my mother says, "Treat yourself good". And to her friend Carrie, who will no doubt provide any ounce of solace that a person can offer at a time like this.


Jenny said...

That prayer is precious. I'm too familiar w/ the grass is greener syndrome - and prayers of gratitute and love are great reminders of our blessings.

village mama said...

hi Amy, I think everyone feels this in some-way-shape-or-form one time or another. A senior friend who is a yoga teacher often tells her students 'whatever material stuff you WANT here on planet earth remember, you can't take it with you in the hearse'. Sounds like you already have the most amazing treasures: a life partner and kids.

Lynn from said...

I can totally relate. Great post! I think it is really true that you just have to be grateful for what you have...and it's so true that the grass always seems greener on the other side!

ames said...

beeswax! that's the color I want to paint my living room :D

Jen!BigBinder said...

Getting to that point (and then getting back to it, and then back again) is the best... I totally believe it is the key to happiness.

And my 4 year old son, literally 5 minutes ago just said his prayers when I tucked him into bed. Thank you for Mommy, Daddy, his friends, his sister, etc. Then he said, "Mom, I love you so much". (Me) "Well, I love you too!". (Him) "And your boobs. They're cool. Night!". Oh, well, um. Thanks?

susiej said...

This is awesome... the links yousent are amazing... and yes, it's so easy to fall into this trap. It starts young... it just needs to be filled with lots of love.

Elisabeth said...

I finally figured out what GIAG was but I am completely in the dark about SAHM. What the hell is it? Do I want it too?!?!

Amy, you actually have what most of the world wants -- love, respect from your husband, family, healthy children, self-confidence, a job, a home of your own, and MUCH, MUCH more. Sometimes those huge homes in Great Falls (where ever) are not only empty of furniture but empty in all the things that are so plentiful in your life.