How My Grandson Schooled Me This Summer
My dad liked to repeat the well-known advice Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react to it. I would stare at him blankly and nod my head in approval. But now I recognize it as very good advice. Advice I need to use every time I leave the house. I am often given the chance to display kindness instead of something not so kind. I can also choose to see the obstacle as an opportunity rather than a problem or a catastrophe. Then when it’s done, it’s done. Don’t replay it in your head all day while boiling over with anger. This important step can make all the difference in a good day and a bad day. Sometimes I forget this advice. My grandson was able to remind me of it a couple times this summer.
One day while on my route, my car started making a horrible noise. I went to see the mechanic and was distraught to find that this issue needed to be fixed right away. And it would nearly drain my meager emergency fund of which I was so fond. We went to the waiting room where I proceeded to cry over the loss of the majority of my savings. My grandson told me that he thought I was actually very lucky because I had enough money to pay for it. I told him he was absolutely right. But I was blessed rather than lucky. In a similar situation in the past, I would have to ask my family for help. I stopped my pouting right away and thanked the good Lord for my emergency fund. After all, it is just that… a fund for emergencies. And they will definitely happen. So use what you need and build it back up. No need to cry about it. That was the old greedy mentality trying to sneak back in. After a decent wait, I was called in to the office to pay and found that the final cost was considerably less than the estimate. Elijah’s wise words helped me to change the direction of the day.
Another example happened later on a jam packed Friday evening at Panama City Beach. Elijah and I had just spent a (questionably) fun two hours in a busy arcade. We left with ice cream cones and slush puppies in hand. Inching down Front Beach Rd in bumper to bumper traffic at 2 mph was causing me some anxiety. I was griping under my breath when my grandson reclined his seat and exclaimed “Now, this is the life.” I looked at him and saw a big smile on his sweet chocolate covered face. I remember feeling that way. That’s why I moved here. That was a reminder to me to quit complaining and thank God for the opportunity to live in my favorite vacay spot. Then we rolled down the windows and turned up the music and joined the party. Sometimes all we need is a fresh perspective. My grandson has a good one.