We've been discussing "Stumbling On Happiness" at church the last several weeks. It's been a great topic, the idea that happiness cannot be found through the pursuit of it, but rather by lifestyle, behavioral, and attitude choices in which happiness becomes a byproduct. Things like positivity, servitude, and adversity/stress management. Honestly, this message couldn't come at a better time for me. This month has been incredibly difficult, and I welcome each Sunday service as an opportunity for me to shore up some strength for the upcoming week. Today was no different.
I walked in to "Three Little Birds" being played by the band and did an internal eye roll. I've never really liked that song. Everything's going to be alright? Um, no. I'm more in the Built To Spill camp of "You were wrong when you said, 'Everything's gonna be alright.'" Because things go wrong all the time. People lose their jobs. Relationships end. Sickness, climate change, hunger, poverty. Mosquito bites. Awful abounds. I mean, in happier times, or maybe even in slightly less intensely stressful times, I'm an optimist. I like to believe that things will work out. Maybe even work out alright. But lately, I've begun to doubt. What if things don't tie up neatly? What if there is no real resolution ever, just this continuous forward motion? What if there's no meant-to-be, no grand-design, no point? Seriously, it's keeping me up at night.
I worry that I won't be able to find a job. Or that I'll have to take something that kills my spirit just because it pays. I worry that I'll never have another relationship. That a single mother of three is completely unmarketable. I worry that all my best days are behind me and that I missed all my chances to be someone great. That the writer's block I'm experiencing isn't a phase, that my voice is gone, that I'm all ideas, notes and single lines.
This morning's Big Idea was about living in the present, and the first thing our campus pastor read was Matthew 6:25-34. The focus here, for those of you who won't read the verses, is not to worry. That God will ensure that tomorrow is taken care of. For real? How? What if? What about? But? But? But.... The verse goes on to say that today has enough of its own troubles to deal with. True enough. The point is, get through today. Just today. This day. And there's merit in that.
Yesterday sucked. I was late for work because I couldn't stop crying in the shower. (Lame.) Then I cried again at work. (Lamer.) And then again at home. (Lamest. WTF Kate?) I swear to you, I'm not even a crier usually, but I guess I am now. And it's really embarrassing and awful and I hate it and I'm such a girl and I can't even help myself. Ideally, I would have spent the day in bed, wallowing and worrying, but it was freaking hot and the kids were fighting and begging to go to the pool. So we went. For two hours I watched my kids swim, got gallons of chlorinated water in my eyes, and floated in the lazy river with MG in my lap. And for two hours I lived in the present and enjoyed the sun, the smell of sunblock, the screams of happy kids.
That's what it's all about folks. It's about the present. This moment. Right now. "This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it." And let me say that each day.
Listening to: The Joy Formidable "The Big Roar"