Appreciate the Randomness

The other day I was watching a rerun of an Oprah episode in which Oprah asked Jennifer Aniston what advice Jennifer would give to her twenty-year-old self. I don’t really recall what Jennifer said, because, honestly, I began thinking what I would tell My twenty-year-old self.

And so, the thought thread began…

What WOULD I tell myself?

I would tell myself not to place my worth in someone else’s hands…

I would tell myself to trust ME more and doubt ME much less…

I would tell myself to live more in confidence and less in fear…

And tell myself to live in and appreciate whatever stage of life I’m in, to quit worrying about the next stage, the next plan, the next item on the “to do” list. Pay attention to today.

…the list goes on and on…

But I think the single most important message I would tell myself, one that just sort of sums it up and one which I would tell my kids, right now, if they asked…

Appreciate the randomness and the ordinary in everyday living.

You just never know how that day, that moment, that “non-event-occasion” may hold a memory; one that, when visited years later, brings joy just in it’s randomness and its ordinariness.

I look at this picture and I laugh. The day was so random and so ordinary. Two families went to the lake on a hot summer day. Fourth of July had passed several days before (which explains why Heather was still toting around this flag, I guess). Everyone had been playing in the lake and in the pool. Mommies were slathering sunscreen on everyone and passing healthy snacks around to all. Bryce looks as if he is totally entertained by his older sister and her patriotic ways, as if everyone should stand and start singing the national anthem and Jimmy looks as if he is just bored by her antics, because, after all, she is stealing center stage away from him. And not only that, but “does she really need to stand on my air mattress?”

There is so much history among these three (and the littlest sidekick, Mandy, who happens to be absent from this particular photo). They are all adults now, with careers and grown-up lives, and, in a couple of cases, with families, of their own. But you wouldn’t know that, just by looking at this picture. It’s so “ordinary”; so “random.” But it holds years of collective memories and precious moments and a promise of little lives unfolding.

So, I’m glad I happened to take this random picture on an ordinary day, because it reminds me today to appreciate the ordinary. Something I would tell my twenty-year-old-self.

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One Response to Appreciate the Randomness

  1. Fae says:

    I love this post!! It really makes one stop and ask the same questions. I would say all that you did but I have two additions:
    1. Spiral perms? Stay away from them, you’ll look like a poodle.
    2. When those people who make that new MacIntosh Apple Home Computer go ‘public’ buy all the stock that you can afford and keep buying it.

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