When I was a sophomore in college, my dear roommate and I had an answering machine that said, "Hey! You've reached Jamie and Katie's room! Leave us a message! And remember, when life throws you lemons, make lemonade!"
Cheesy, yes. So, very, much.
But it actually sounded somewhat cute and usually people were laughing while they tried to leave their message, so we kept it all year.
I think I am a lemonade kind of person. I typically try to find the good in things, sometimes to a fault. I'm an optimist, albeit a tad cynical at times, but I've found that having a positive attitude really does make a huge difference in pretty much every circumstance. In my mind, life's too short to be bummed all the time. And, really, sometimes being negative is easier, and I'm always up for a challenge.
Say, like, yesterday for example. Yesterday started out as one of those days where, from the moment I awoke, I knew it was going to be a bad day. I woke up on the proverbial wrong side of the bed and everything sort of gently crashed around me as the day continued on. From a cranky baby to a lack of laundry detergent, I quickly realized that I was allowing very small (though somewhat significant) things drag me down. Breakfast tasted bad. The bed needed to be made. The bathroom towel was on the floor. Plans for the evening had to be cancelled a la sick baby. Finally, around mid-morning, I gave up. I sat at the kitchen table and started to pray.
Okay. I use the word "pray" potentially incorrectly here. A more appropriate word might be "vent", or, rather, "EMOTE". I am very grateful that God is extensively and eternally patient, nay, long suffering, because sometimes (often ... often times ...) my prayers consist of me trying to work it out in my head and justify every way I'm feeling and wah wah wah until I finally settle down and enjoy silence. I write a lot about silence. That is because for me, SILENCE IS A CHALLENGE.
And I like challenges, right?
So, I finally shut-up after much EMOTING and let my head hit the table. I sat there, sorting my thoughts, mumbling prayers here and there, feeling stupid for whining about such feeble things anyway, when I felt the table wet under my cheeks. I sat up and realized I was crying. I looked around, stunned, wondering why in the heck I was crying. What happened? Then I started to think about Cub being sick, and the tears started again. Aha. That was it. I was, apparently, more worried about Cub than I had realized, and that anxiety was spilling into everything in my morning, making it all seem much worse than it actually was. I wiped my eyes and shrugged my shoulders and mumbled, "Okay." After a few more moments I sighed and then apologized to God for my senseless rambling. Then I asked Him for a good attitude.
Good grief. Good grief, I thought. Of all of these crazy happenings in my morning that pile up and make me feel like they are out of my control, the one thing I CAN control is my attitude. And I need a good one today.
And that was it. A fresh perspective and cup of coffee later, I felt like it was a new day. I geared myself up for the unpredictability of having a sick Cub and even accepted defeat in the laundry department. But, later, I found laundry detergent, tucked away in our laundry room cupboards. Then, after his nap, I noticed Cub's right eye wasn't as bad as his left. And all of the sudden I realized that a simple change in my attitude had allowed me to calm down enough to open my eyes. To open my eyes to what was right in front of me. A good attitude not only makes you optimistic, it makes you realize the good in the small things. By the end of the day, I was able to look back on the day and see that it wasn't so bad. God even nudged me to take the time out to check on some friends of mine and see how their days were going. Fresh perspective. It helps you make a nice big pitcher of lemonade.
And goodness, lemonade tastes so much better than lemons.
Even if it's made a little late. :)