Not too long ago, I read a great post about an adoptive family. One of the ways they are working to teach their daughter to be content is teaching her to say, “I have enough” at times when she was tempted to fret over how much of something she has or doesn’t have.
“I have enough. I have enough. I have enough.” she will say, and this helps her to remember that she really does have enough.
I have a December birthday. This year, a couple days before my day, one child fell ill. At 2:30 am, the day of my birthday I woke up to the sound of another child calling to me in his pitiful-I-really-don’t-feel-good voice. I was heartbroken for him as I stumbled to his room in the dark, felt his head, and immediately determined that he too had succumbed to the “plague.”
A little bit later, I crawled back into my own bed, husband (who often shares these duties with me) says, “Crappy Birthday!” And that is how my day started.
At one point during the day, I opened the card that way laying on the breakfast table. It was a sweet card from my husband, but there were no accompanying gifts. (I had inadvertently learned earlier in the week that my husband had renewed a magazine for me, and I had already received a few gifts from him.)
A little later I put together a veggie tray, put the finishing touches on a white chocolate cheesecake with dark chocolate ganache and a double chocolate Oreo crust, and pureed strawberries from our frozen stash of spring bounty; then I sent them out the door with Handsome, on his way to a party…a party that I really wanted to go to. (It was his colleagues that were throwing the party, so it wasn’t something that I felt comfortable attending on my own.) Someone had to stay at home with the sick kids; that was me.
I had told my husband that I didn’t want a cake – not right now, with all of the other Christmas goodies in the house. More sugar doesn’t even sound good. Plus there’s just never time to go out and enjoy a leisurely dinner…and there’s always a billion shoppers in the restaurants this time of year; I said I’d rather wait to go out too.
When a friend called and asked how my day was, I just laughed and shared that it was a non-event.
In the time since my birthday I have thought about this day a lot.
Last month, my dear husband spent a lot of time and money buying us a new laptop and me an iPod to use as my calendar. He has installed games and all sorts of other things that he thought I would use/like.
We also recently went out to eat at a restaurant that was my choice; I even splurged and got the strawberry lemonade!
I have a newly finished basement (pictures to come) and all of the decorations/furnishings that it can hold. I was able to spend the money to have a few things custom-framed and money to have pictures printed.
Since we have new room in the basement much of the other floors of our house has been rearranged too. New picture frames, new paint, new touches here and there.
I lack for nothing.
I have an amazing husband who shares middle of the night sick kid duty and four awesome children whom I adore.
Yet I had the nerve to be the slightest bit disappointed on my birthday when things didn’t turn out how I wanted them to.
(And I wonder why on earth my children stuggle to find contentment!)
I’ve decided that I need to start telling myself, “I have enough. I have enough. I have enough.” I need to remember to be thankful for what I have rather than sad for what I didn’t get. I need to write my blessings on my arms and wear short sleeved shirts, maybe.
I know it’s a human struggle. I know it’s normal for my head to think logically and my heart to lag behind, yearning for something that isn’t meant to be. Yet I long for that to change.
Lord, To you I offer my sincerest thanks for all that I have – for the amazing husband and the wonderful children, for shelter and clothes, for abundance and for health and for so much more. Please forgive me for forgetting that, forgive me for not looking to you, my richest blessing. Please, please allow my heart to match my head. Please help me remember that enough really is enough.