Are You Stopping to Smell the Roses?

Hello!  I’m happy that you are here with me today!  Are you having a busy June so far?  Here in the United States, this is the time of year where life is a flurry of summer activities.  Usually by this time of the month, I have already made the blog post for this month.  I’m sorry to be late!  While usually we “talk dolls”, I have things on my mind that I wish I had paid attention to earlier in life.  Hopefully, by putting them down in writing and sharing them with you, it will draw my attention to them more frequently and cause me to realize their importance.  With that having been said – let’s get started! 

I have been given so many blessings in my lifetime.  Yes, there have been ups and downs just like everyone else, but in retrospect I can look back and see the blessings even though at the time they may not have looked that way to me.  I could list them and this post would go on for a very long time, but that isn’t what this is about today.  I am a person who wants to squeeze every minute from every day.  I don’t want to miss a thing!  When I get older, I don’t want to look back and think “I wish I had done that…” 

As a young woman, I thoroughly enjoyed the phase of having a young family and all the busyness that went with those years.  The ballgames, the track meets, the piano lessons, the dance recitals, the 4H meetings,  church activities, and the list was endless as the years quickly flew by.  Before I realized it, my children were driving and life was changing and we were entering a new phase.  That’s good….change is good….

Soon it was dating and high school proms and college exams and applications and seeing my babies walk across the stage at their high school graduations.  Still, I was very focused on meeting the needs of my family.  Not to mention, there was also a 9 to 5 job thrown into this mix.  Soon, they were off to college, yet more changes in store.  Still, change is good and I am a very focused person and very determined to get the task at hand completed to the best of my ability.  Life quickly moves on and my children are married with families of their own.  More change…

For me, being a grandmother was  (is) the best job I have ever had!  All the FUN without as many of the responsibilities!  Once again, I found myself at dance recitals, plays, and all the activities that young children are involved in.  Of course, I was a proud grandmother and I didn’t want to miss a moment of these wonderful years.  I wanted them to know that Papaw and I were there cheering them on and enjoying life with them!  We have always been a close knit family and this sense of togetherness is important.

That wonderful time of life called retirement finally approaches! Yes, life is a little slower pace, but my mind still races to look after those I love and to get all I can out of each and every day.  I always giggled at those folks who said they were busier after retirement than they were before.  It is TRUE!  But it is a different kind of busy.    I enjoy the big family gatherings and the buzz of laughter and children in the house.  After all, Isn’t this how it is supposed to be?  Isn’t this the way I have always gone at life?  Indeed, it is.  (Granny was good with her sage advice – she always said I went at life as though I was killing snakes!) LOL!  I guess maybe I did. 

I remember my Granny telling me many times in my younger years to slow down and smell the roses along the way and to enjoy the trip.  I thought I was doing exactly that.  And I was – except it was always for someone else.  I didn’t take the time to enjoy life  for myself.  I worked what I wanted to do into the schedule when there was a few minutes to spare.  No, I have not resented it, but I wish I had taken more time to enjoy the “me time”.  

As women, I think we are programmed to do for others, for  being caregivers,  and seldom taking enough time for ourselves.  I’m sure this is also true for men.  They are busy making their way in the world and taking care of their families.  

During this  present stage in life, minor health concerns and just general slowing down have caused me to realize something very important.  I always thought that I would get around to enjoying those things, there would be time later on when the kids were older.  For every change that occurred, there was quickly something filling up that time slot in my life and it wasn’t working out to be that “me time” I spoke of earlier.   

So…after FINALLY waking up and smelling the coffee, I have made some changes in my life.  I have vowed to live with the attitude of taking advantage of more “me time”.  I am not short changing anyone in the process, but I am a much more relaxed and happy person because I have realized the importance of doing for myself other than just squeezing myself into the busy schedule. 

Friends, I have found out that I love to restore antique furniture, to sit down and embroidery, to enjoy that extra cup of coffee while watching the birds at the bird feeders.  So many things that I just didn’t think I had the time for before, I now be sure to take the time for.  This was a problem of my own making while all the time I was sure I was enjoying the journey.  Now, I take the time to refresh and to ENJOY the trip.  I take time for me.  You know how much I adore restoring old dolls and giving them a second opportunity.  I feel like I have also been shown that I need to slow down and enjoy so that I won’t have as many of those things left on my list as time goes on that I wish I had done and simply didn’t take the time for myself to enjoy them. 

After all these years, I am taking Granny’s advice and doing the things I enjoy, too.  I restore dolls, refinish antique furniture, I’m learning to paint, I embroidery more, I garden because I enjoy it – not because it needs to be done.  Again, change is GOOD!  This change is now becoming a way of life me.  My life had previously been about doing for everyone else and that was good.  Now, it is also about doing for me and that is BETTER for me and those around me.  How about you?  Do you take care of yourself and enjoy the journey?  Make it a practice while you’re younger – even if it is just 15 minutes a day.  Take the long bubblebath rather than the quick shower.  Enjoy life!  We only get one shot at it! 

Next month I promise to go back to the format of talking dolls as we usually do here!  I just felt it important to remind each of us to take the time for ourselves that we deserve even when it seems like we can’t spare 60 seconds.  Until next time, stay well, be happy, and most importantly be kind to one another.




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