At the beginning of last week I found myself sitting at my Dentist's office.
It started when I woke up on Sunday. My face felt vaguely weird but I didn't really stop to think about it for hours. That evening I touched the right side of my chin and realized just how different it really felt. I could kind of feel it but not really. It was like it was partially numb. That sensation went up my cheek and to my ear too. And then I realized I really couldn't feel my teeth on the right bottom side of my mouth as either. Hmmm. In my annoyance and confusion I contacted Google. (never do that). By the end of my computer surfing I had MS and a stroke and cancer and Bells Palsy and a brain tumor. I told Michael and he wasn't NEARLY as concerned about my impending death as I was. On Monday morning I asked him if he would stop by the dentist to see if they could fit me in.
After describing my symptoms the Dentist referred me to an oral surgeon who wasn't available for TWO MORE WEEKS. That is when I officially started to FREAK OUT. I drove straight to the Dentist to see where else I could go. The Receptionist was so sweet and asked me to wait so she could chat with the Dentist. I sat in the waiting room trying not to freak out. Everything about life felt out of control and suddenly it was not okay. I want to pound the ground with my fists and scream. I'm not worried about me. I'm not in pain. I am angry. I am ABSOLUTELY livid. I am mad at God because I've had ENOUGH uncertainty and waiting and now THIS. THIS that I am feeling RIGHT NOW. I am mad that it's almost Thanksgiving and I don't want to have a weird numb face for Thanksgiving. I'm mad that the Dentist doesn't have answers. I'm scared that I may have to go to a scary doctor. This is the part of life I simply can not handle. I hate the absolute loss of control that comes with uncertainty. I am resisting my life with everything in me. I do that all the time.
But NONE of this is about dentistry or teeth or anything remotely to do with any of that. (Turns out an old filling hurt a nerve and now I need a root canal). It's actually about ALL of us and the in between moments in life. Did you know that research shows you know it takes TWICE as much energy to swing and miss than it takes to swing and connect? It takes ten million times more energy to resist what is true in your life instead of just accepting it. I have an impossible time at making uncertainty my friend. Some things in life- uncertainty- dental crap- road blocks are just a part of the journey. I don't know how to do it but I know words so I start there. We must pick up uncertainty at the airport and invite it to live in our house. We must welcome it with a big grin and open arms. We must make nice with it. Because it's never going away. Let me repeat that.
Where there is life there is uncertainty. ALWAYS. If you want to be alive- AND if you want to be happy you must also be at peace with uncertainty. You must welcome it in advance. OR you must simply be okay being an angry, awful, miserable person.
Next time I am in a moment like my moments in the waiting room I will repeat- Yes- I embrace this part too. I am open to this. I will not resist my life and the lessons it contains. Slap that on a tshirt and call it my mantra for the week baby.
The past week has been a good one. We celebrated Thanksgiving with my best friend, Annie and her whole big family. It felt like home.
I didn't take any pictures after this because I was too busy eating, laughing, talking and child wrangling.
Our time off was relaxing and brilliant. We took a long time doing things that we usually do in a hurry.
Happiest in water. I even had him pick out his own outfit and get dressed every day. I usually do most of it because we are always in a hurry which is a terrible way for him to learn. I don't want to be dressing him when he's 42 years old because I'm so impatient.
We spent much of our time outdoors...
Vibrant leaves danced with shadows while with the trees danced with light.
Let life fall like leaves. Don't resist a bit of it.
And here is our THIRD ANNUAL Un-Holiday card at Target.
I gave up getting the picture perfect family Holiday card after last year.
At this shoot. I am still laughing although I wasn't then.
Our family is FAR from family-portrait-perfect and our holidays look nothing like I imagined they would. Sometimes that feels like a sucker punch and I just want to fall to the floor and cry. It's hard to let go of what you want. It's hard to let go of resistance. But the more I let go of expectations and embrace REAL LIFE the easier and better life is.
Life is a blessing for every one of us; it's a roller coaster of fear and joy and uncertainty and embracing the unexpected. It's filled with imperfections. No one's holiday is perfect. Maybe you are like me and haven't yet bought a single gift and you are a tiny bit freaking out. Guess what? IT DOESN'T MATTER. It doesn't matter what everyone else is doing- find what works for you and learn to LOVE IT. The Holidays are HERE and time is zooming in on us with lightening speed- don't forget what this season REALLY means to you. Don't let what you expected stop you from loving what is.