I didn’t really want to but…

Spring is good- its a new start for the earth. The flowers, trees, grass and dirt get to rejuvenate, re-germinate and regrow- throwing off the winter weight and coming out of hiding. As I look around, I see the outdoors returning to its best- not in its winter sheltering or its summer wilting but in its truest beauty, strongest form. Spring is always pushing flowers, plants, trees, grass and dirt to move- to change and grow up into what it is meant to be at its creative and creation heart.

I think sometimes being pushed by something outside of our choosing is exactly what we need to grow.

There were two instances late this past winter that have pushed me into a small amount of growth and change through the early part of Spring.

First of all, Elijah got a Lego helicopter set for Valentine’s Day. A few days after the candy was gone, Eli became very interested in trying to build the helicopter. It was a Wednesday morning when he really started asking if we could do it. The thing about Wednesdays this year is that it’s the one day that Eli, Andi and I stay home and spend the day together. School, GG day with grandma, and my work usually break up Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. So when Eli wants something on Wednesday morning- there is no escape. No one else is around- its just me and his whims, requests, great ideas, energy and pleads.

I can’t explain why I didn’t want to build the helicopter, why I thought it would be a project better suited for a Daddy/Eli evening than a Mommy/Eli morning- didn’t he want to read a book or help bake something instead?

Despite my reservations, we broke open the box and began to build. Turns out there are step by step instructions to these Lego sets- I am such a newbie! I was pleasantly surprised, and together we cruised through the construction of a pretty awesome helicopter. We worked together for almost an hour, side by side, helping each other decipher pictures and fit small pieces together. The time spent together was the best part but the actual process of Lego construction was much more fun than I thought it would be. I should not have written it off so flippantly.

Legl Helicopter- built by Eli and Mommy Feb 2012

The second winter springboard came late February in the build-up to Oscar night. Drew and I have grown to be Oscar fans- enjoying the award show and the push to see good movies. We were gifted a date night around Valentine’s day. Seeing a movie was a given that night and the choice came down to: “The Vow”- a Rachel McAdams rom-com or “Hugo”- the Oscar nominated film by Scorsese. If I was honest, I wanted to see the easy, romantic, emotionally coddling, beautiful actor filled “Vow”- it was Valentine’s season after all. However, I knew come Oscar night, I would really be wishing I had seen “Hugo”. Drew felt the same- not dying to see “Hugo” but interested definitely in what it might be. We bought tickets to the 8:05 show and were immediately blown away.

“Hugo” was a magical, beautiful, thoughtful, moving, compassionate, and adventurous piece of movie eye-candy. Beyond being so fun to watch, the themes of redemption, identity and purpose, living a good story, hoping for dreams to come true, believing the best about people, finding yourself despite failures and loss, and the beauty of a child’s power to change the world made it such a good movie. I was moved to see deeper, to hold on to hope more earnestly, and to believe in the power for people’s lives to be redeemed by compassion, inclusion, and the letting go of prejudice and fear. Again, I would have missed so much if I had given into my first, more natural inclination, to see a different movie. I didn’t want to see “Hugo” but did anyways and now cannot recommend it highly enough.

Now that its Spring, there’s a new list of things I do not really want to do…read more Superhero books to Eli, spot clean the carpets, tackle my summer work agenda, learn to cook brussel sprouts and do something with a mango I bought on sale even though I don’t really like mangoes…

However, my winter lesson- what I learned by digging deep into the nourishment of the way-down-there soil, the forced pattern of growing up and out of where I stopped growing somewhere in the busy-ness of the fall, is reminding me that the reward of doing something I do not really want to do, is often a good surprise. A bit of enjoyment, some enlightenment, perhaps greater productivity and a deeper connection with someone I love. I hope to continually submit myself to things I don’t want to do out of a discipline of becoming a greater souled person- more in touch with the world by touching things I wouldn’t choose myself but gratefully receive with open hands and an open mind.


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