There is a pile of laundry to be folded, hung and put away with three more loads to be washed; the toilet hasn’t seen a cleaning wand in three weeks; and I just stepped in something sticky on the kitchen floor. “Mommy, the ice cream truck! I hear the ice cream truck! Can we pleeeeaaase get some ice cream?” My seven year old daughter comes bouncing in the door from outside. I have my leg hiked up in the kitchen sink attempting to wash that mystery sticky stuff from between my toes. “What? No! Can’t you see I am busy?” I shout. “You promised that next time we hear the ice cream truck we can get ice cream!” She stomps off down the porch stairs. You got me there, kid. I did promise.
Some days I feel as though everything around me has been heaped on my shoulders and I may be crushed from it all. I can see the headline now: “Woman crushed to death by a load of dirty laundry all because she couldn’t she the joy right in front of her eyes. (She also had a strange sticky material stuck to her foot.)” It happens to the best of us mothers. We forget to stop and take joy in our own lives.
I got my leg out of the sink and dug a few dollars worth of change from the change jar and was able to catch the ice cream truck just before it rounded the block. Watching my two girls taking simple pleasure in that ice cream was a joyous moment for me. That’s the thing about kids, they have no problem whatsoever stopping what they were doing and enjoying the moment. They live in that moment. Nothing else matters when they are in the moment. That’s the problem with adults, we grow up and forget how to stop and live in the moment. Joy is where you find it. It may not be a huge monumental event with balloons and streamers; it may just be something as simple as ice cream.
Joy is ours if we just open our eyes to it.