Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Why 'The Shoulds' Had to Leave

"Do not say, "Why were the old days better than these?" For it is not wise to ask such questions." ... Ecclesiastes 7:10


Well. Tom's been gone for 6 weeks and 3 days and guess how I'm feeling?

a.) barely hanging on
b.) numb
c.) absolutely contented.

C. The answer is C. But oh! Eight or so years ago, Tom went on a 10-day business trip just across the state and I had great fun the first four days, but the last 6? They dragged and I drooped because I let myself get a bad case of "The Shoulds.":

Tom should be home where he belongs.
I should have my husband home like my friends have theirs.
People should come over and show me they care.
I should not have to spend all these days alone.

I also kept running out of things I felt like doing and you know? I believe that malady (which often used to haunt me) is related to The Shoulds somehow. Wishing things were different is not a solid foundation upon which to be creative. Wishing can be an excuse not to do anything.

Acceptance is better. Acceptance is a stronger foundation, a remarkable starting point to adventures only a rising-up-off-the-couch away. And accepting that if God is all I have, then He will be enough--that's huge.

Oh, the work God has (super patiently) poured into me regarding receiving from Him instead of straining, working or pleading to get things I need. 

Of accepting rather than wishing or complaining or running away. Because of acceptance that Tom is doing what God's called him to do, I've not worried about him, even when he didn't feel well just as the news began mega-reporting  about Ebola in West Africa (he's in South Africa).

And I've relaxed. Looked upon these weeks as a working vacation, really. I've done decorating, blogging, couponing, yard sale-ing, gardening, shopping, visiting, playing, photographing, watching tv, reading, encouraging, ordering-out, cleaning, painting, ironing, emailing, staring out the window at the river--- and more. (Notice I didn't mention walking. Big sigh.)

The Shoulds and all their useless wishing and awful discontentment had to leave in order to make room for acceptance, energy and great joy.


"Does a spring pour forth from the same opening both fresh and salt water?" ...James 3:11

“Understanding is the first step to acceptance, and only with acceptance can there be recovery.” 
― J.K. Rowling

"Some people believe holding on and hanging in there are signs of great strength. However, there are times when it takes much more strength to know when to let go and then do it.” 
― Ann Landers


Here are my best deals from Monday when I combined sales with coupons:

Tropicana Farmstand juice--  $1
3 Coast bar soaps--  .49 cents
Food Should Taste Good chips -- $1 each (regularly $3.49 each)
Cascadian Farm granola-- .49 cents (regularly $4.19)
Old El Paso taco shells-- free
Fiber One & Nature Valley bars -- .80 cents each
Mullers Greek yogurt-- .50 cents each

Oh, and all of these (except the milk at 1.99) were free:

Would you also like a free $12.99 bag of cat litter? Go here.


And just for fun....

A few books I read over and over and over and--

Thoughts of Home edited by Elaine Greene
If These Walls Could Talk edited by Elaine Greene
Sleeping at the Starlite Motel by Bailey White
Mama Makes up Her Mind by Bailey White
Chicken Every Sunday:My Life with Mother's Boarders by Rosemary Taylor
Forty Plus and Fancy Free by Emily Kimbrough
A Room for Cathy by Catherine Woolley
The Art of Homemaking by Daryl V. Hoole
The Stillmeadow series by Gladys Taber
The Little House series by Laura Ingalls Wilder
The Tobey Heydon series by Rosamond du Jardin
The Moffat series by Eleanor Estes
The Saturdays series by Elizabeth Enright
The Little Britches series by Ralph Moody
Any book by David Grayson
The Plague and I by Betty MacDonald
Anybody Can Do Anything by Betty MacDonald
Onions in the Stew by Betty MacDonald

Anyone else want to share their much-read books?



Rosemary said...

My comfort reads are Gladys Taber and David Grayson (cannot part with these books). Another author similar to Gladys is Jean Hersey. She writes books with seasonal chapters also. By the way, I have the book Thoughts of Home (from your list) in my to-be-read pile now. Great list, Debra.

Debra said...

Oh Rosemary! Thanks for reminding me about David Grayson. He definitely needs to be on my list! I also remembered Betty MacDonald a few minutes ago. I'll have to check out Jean Hersey--thanks! Blessings, Debra