This has been one of those weeks. You know those weeks when you are so busy that you cannot seem to even catch your breath. One of those weeks when no matter how hard you work you just can’t seem to catch up. One of those weeks when by the week’s end anger and frustration has built to the point at which you are almost ready to explode, that you feel you just need to vent.
When I got up early this morning to compose a post, this is the anger and frustration out of which I wrote. In fact, the original post was entitled, “Five Things I Absolutely Loathe.” But as I went down my list of loathsome things, I began to think of at least three things that made me smile for every one thing that made me angry. So instead of “Five Things I Absolutely Loathe,” I give you “Five Things that Make Me Smile.”
1. Getting up early on a Saturday morning to fix breakfast for my family.
For some reason, I have a problem getting up on time during the week, but on Saturday morning, I awake for no apparent reason around five and cannot get back to sleep. I usually spend this time enjoying the peace and quiet and writing, but I soon begin to miss the voices and laughter of the rest of the family.
And how better to wake everyone up and get them into the same place than the smell of breakfast cooking. You cannot shake them awake, but when the smell of food wafts through the house, for some reason they are awaken from their slumber. This morning I prepared peppered bacon, eggs, and French toast.
2. When my wife and kids call me for no apparent reason.
Throughout the day, thoughts of my wife and children pop into my head for no apparent reason. I cannot seem to help myself, but I wonder where they are and what they are doing at the strangest, most inopportune times. However, every now and then one of them will call me, and when I inquire as to the reason for the call, they either reply that they were simply wondering what I was doing, or that they forgot the reason for calling. The latter is used mostly by my children.
Nevertheless, for whatever the reason they call, it always brings a smile to my face. It is good to know someone is thinking about you.
3. When guilt causes me to do the right thing.
So last week I ran by the house during the day to pick up something I had forgotten. While I was there, I happened to check the mail and there was a nice hefty check from our insurance company. Evidently we have been overpaying on our homeowners’ policy for quite some time now. It suddenly dawned on me that no one knew about the existence of this check but me, and I could use it to buy some of those things I have been wanting for some time now, namely a XM satellite radio for my car and a couple pair of new Cole Haans loafers.
But guilt got the best of me, so I finally showed the check to my wife. Alas, no XM satellite radio, no Cole Haans loafers; it seemed she had other ideas for what to do with an unexpected windfall. But she seems to be really happy, so I guess all I can do is smile as well.
4. When I get to share experiences with my son that my dad shared with me.
When I was a young man, I loved going to the barbershop with my dad on Saturday afternoons. Black barber and beauty shops on a Saturday are more like events. They should charge admission on top of the price of a haircut. You can watch whatever sports program is being featured that day, or you can watch the latest bootleg movie, sometimes before it even hits the theaters. If sports or theater is not your thing, you can hear deep philosophical conversations by some of the greatest minds ever assembled in a barbershop.
Now my head is as smooth as a baby’s behind, but my son gives me an excuse to visit the barber every other weekend. And now he enjoys going just as much as I did when I was his age.
5. Finally understanding some of the lessons my elders attempted to teach me as a child.
When I was a child, my elders attempted to teach me a number of lessons that I could not understand as a child. However, now daily I am confronted with situations wherein one of those lessons comes to mind.
Just this week in a confrontation with an irrational, argumentative colleague, for a brief second I lost my patience and decided to let her know how I really felt. Then I remembered my grandfather telling me at one time or another, that I should never waste my time arguing with fools or babies because I have nothing to gain either way. I realized at that very moment that this was one of those fools he was speaking of, so I just smiled, ended the conversation and went about my business. I guess I am finally getting the hang of this whole adulthood thing.
What things make you smile?