This post was inspired by the novel Those We Love Most by Lee Woodruff. Every family has its secrets and deceptions, but when they come to surface after a tragic accident, they change the family dynamic forever. Join From Left to Write on June 6 as we discuss Those We Love Most. You can also enter to win a live video chat with Lee Woodruff! As a member, I received a copy of the book for review purposes.
The grass is always greener, “they” say. Whatever lies on the other side of the fence seems to be better than what we already have; what we forget is that green grass comes from the care given to it–and a healthy dose of fertilizer. Distance blurs the picture, making it more difficult to discern the sharp edges on each blade of grass.
It’s easy as parents to feel like you’re never quite good enough; that the lives you’re providing your children are nowhere near as perfect as their classmates’; that you are, ultimately, a complete failure. The thing is, the other parents? They’re probably thinking the same thing.
Before you get wrapped up in the dream house with the shiny car in the driveway and the perfect patio set, remember that appearances are simply that: what you can see from the outside. Like a book and its cover, they do not indicate the true story; the turmoil beneath the surface can only be seen by those participating in that drama, and only if they so choose to acknowledge it. Nobody is perfect. It’s trite and over-said, but it’s true. We all have our dirty little secrets. We all are yearning for something else, without realizing everything we need is right there in front of us. The human race is pretty silly, isn’t it?
I have been working on living in gratitude. It’s not easy by any means. There are so many gorgeous things I would love to surround myself with; so much adventure I would love to embark upon. What have I been missing out on? But the life I lead is pretty darn great, if I do say so myself, and we have more than enough. All anyone can really ask for is enough, right? If you can afford to grab a bite to eat at one of your favorite burger bars without having to also worry about paying for the electric bill–if you have a job to go to every day that you enjoy, a partner who loves and supports you, a roof over your heads (even if it leaks a little), and children you adore–then you’re already way ahead of the game, if you’re even concerned at all about the game of Life. It’s not a matter of it could always be worse; it’s more that we’ve had some tough times and we’re coming through them and it’s just wonderful to be alive. I’ll take my tiny life any day over the gates and grandeur of a much bigger one. Because beneath it all–it is what we make of it. And we can’t escape in somebody else’s life.