Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Refrigerator Blindness

"It's the little things that matter."  That kiss before leaving for work.  A timely phone call.  Sending a letter to a friend.  A smile. A cup of coffee while lending your ear.  Saying a simple "I love you."  All these small gestures add up to rich moments of  love. Definitely, kind things stack up and matter.  These little things are what make up everyday life.  But so are these little things.  Stomping down the stairs like a herd of elephants.  Not getting the dirty laundry into the basket.  Interrupting.  Nagging.  Nail biting.  Leaving lights on.  These, too, are all little things.

The sweet little things are sweet.  The other things... not so sweet.  It's those "other" little things that can steal away our everyday joy if we let them.  Why bring this up?  Once again - Grace.  Grace in the little things, well... it matters!  If something happened to Daryl tomorrow, would I really care which direction he had replaced the toilet paper roll or how he'd squeezed the toothpaste tube?  Nope.

The older I get, the less the nit-picky stuff matters.  I'll confess that one of the little things that used to drive me crazy was my family's Refrigerator Blindness.  They could stand at the fridge with the door wide open and ask, "Where's the ketchup?"  or  "Do we have any mayonnaise?"  I'd know it was right there, at the front of the shelf, in plain sight.  Yet, somehow, they just couldn't see it.  I'd sigh, roll my eyes, and say, "Really?  Just look.  I know it's in there!"  I would find that it irked me.  Not much.  Just a little.  But, remember, it's those little things that matter.

Need proof?
Chinese Water Torture!
Yep.  Chinese water torture is evidence that little things can drive a person insane!  When I let a little "drip" of something irritate me, it may not be a big deal...alone.  But if I let a lot of little things "drip" at me, it can bore a hole in my joy over time!  What's the solution then?  Decide it really doesn't matter in the long run and learn to laugh!  

A couple years back, I decided to turn the annoying Refrigerator Blindness of my Haidle crew into a joke so I could try laughing about it.  I started teasing my family that I was going to hide their Birthday and Christmas gifts in the fridge since they couldn't seem to see anything in there!  (Actually, Tate's 18th birthday is this weekend and I'm sure he hasn't seen the stack of presents I hid in the fridge because I put them on the top shelf, right next to the milk!)  

 For me, learning to laugh about this is one small "drip" that has turned from Chinese water torture to a "drip" that waters my growing love for my family.  This may be simplistic, but learning to laugh about the not-so-sweet little things has helped me be more gracious.  I know that if something happened to one of them, I'd miss their "blindness" and long to hear them ask once more, "Where's the milk?"  

Of course, stacking up lots of sweet little things is much more pleasant in the everyday.  Reality is the "other little things" will always be there, too.  It's the attitude we decide to have about them that matters.  I want to be gracious.  And besides, I need someone to laugh with! 

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