My husband Clive abseiled 220 metres down a building recently.
This wasn’t an ordinary day in the life of our little family.
When his feet made contact with the grass, Clive kissed the ground. It was in jest – a bit of a show – but significant none-the-less.
The build up to the day, especially the last week, had been anxiety inducing. I was excited for him, but (I think understandably) also a little nervous.
The plunge generated much needed fundraising dollars and also a great sense of morale among the participants. It also brought with it anticipation, the rush of adrenalin, excitement, anxiety, moments of suspense, comaraderie, a sense of accomplishment, and fun and laughter.
The incredible things in life are worth celebrating. The brave feats, the survivals, the accolades, the break-throughs, the new jobs, the weddings and the anniversaries.
These ‘high moments’ in our lives can be life-giving and regenerating. They can bring people together and inspire us to keep going. The exciting times can show us the possibilities, create a sense of passion and purpose, and a renewed energy to reach for bigger and better things.
For me, after a week of slightly heightened anxiety, Clive’s plunge also brought clarity.
As Clive descended the scaffolding with his team-mates, their CEO, and other supporters, congratulated them for a job well done. Our three young daughters ran towards their daddy and wrapped themselves around him in pride and excitement, but also great affection.
I stood back taking photos and absorbing the scene. He’d done it! He’d taken on a challenge and succeeded. He’d descended well and landed in one piece – safe and sound.
The adrenalin of the moment kept us buzzing for a while, but the clarity came later, in the quiet.
Much later, now home and warm, I watched my husband kiss our daughters goodnight. I was proud of him no doubt, but more than anything I was thankful. Thankful for these other moments. These moments of ‘ordinariness’. Thankful that he was safe, thankful that he was here, thankful for his love and his time – for us – his family.
As I sit here now, ‘penning’ my thoughts, I am filled with the deep joy and satisfaction of the quiet moment. It’s not always so quiet. The noise level and demands around here can get pretty intense at times. But for now I can sit back and appreciate all I have in my life.
So much of the ordinary can be taken for granted, sometimes even begrudged. As a mum at home, there are moments when I yearn for something different – less mundane, less tiring (and tiresome), less chaotic. More sophisticated, more glamorous, more rewarded or acknowledged.
Yet what I have right in front of me demands to be cherished and enjoyed. The ordinary. The everyday.
So, today, I want to celebrate. I don’t want to just read about it or think it, I want to do it!
I want to hug my kids and tell them that they are loved and appreciated.
I want to take the time to nurture the creativity of my daughters, even if it means watching the same thing twenty times or sitting comfortably with the mess – just for now.
When my circumstances become a little crazy and I feel overwhelmed, I want to step back, take a breath and ask myself what really matters.
I want to laugh – to try to have more fun and be more fun.
I want to tell my husband that he means the world to me and I’m so privileged to have him in my life.
I want to make time to thank the ‘ordinary’ people in my life that have had (or continue to have) an extraordinary impact through quiet encouragement and support.
I want to stop to feel the cool air on my face and the sprinkle of the rain. I want to relish the sun on my back. I want to inhale and appreciate all the beauty that surrounds me.
I want to savour my cup of tea and deeply value the warmth of my home on a stormy day.
I have no doubt there will be more adrenalin pumping moments in my life, and surely there is a healthy anticipation in looking forward to new and exciting things…
…but today I want to sit content with the ordinary.
How about you?
Esther Murray x