Sunday, November 11, 2012
On Tuesday, I had a particularly productive day. I cleaned and vacuumed the living room, loaded and unloaded the dishwasher, hand-washed dirty knives and large pots, washed and dried a load of laundry, and wrote a research paper. Whilst I toiled, Andrea skipped alongside me singing and observing. As I stood at the sink scrubbing onion bits off metal surfaces, my little daughter called out my name.
"Mama! Maaama!! Mammaaaa! MAAAMMAA!!"
"What, Andrea?" I said, rather exasperated.
"Mama, Annie eh happy!" She smiled at me and wrapped her arms around my leg. I returned the smile and told her that I was happy too. And I was. Seeing her happy for all the right reasons fills me with unspeakable joy. Hearing her express her feelings and thoughts-- getting a glimpse into her mysterious mind-- brings me indescribable feelings of wonder and delight. But her declaration of happiness also provoked some self-examination. Am I taking enough time in my life to feel? I don’t think so.
I took Andrea’s unintentional challenge to heart and have spent the last several days feeling. You know what I discovered? I really am happy. There were ugly moments, and frustrating days, and times when my little Andrea was less prolific and more. . . persistent. . . but overall, I uncovered handfuls of suppressed happiness for the blessings that surround me. It was a priceless discovery.