Monday, June 6, 2016

The gift

As the children have gotten older, I have tried different ways of going to the grocery store so as to avoid bringing all of them with me at the same time. When all three come, it takes me about three hours to get the shopping done at my two different stores. That's not including drive time! I have gone in the wee hours of the morning, I have gone at 10 o'clock at night with girlfriends. I have gone during a lunch hour, or after work. I have taken just one child with me. Or I send the list to my husband and have him pick up groceries on his way home from work. I've gone during preschool hours. Or I will take the youngest and let her shine happy rainbows to all the other customers.

Often grocery shopping is a thankless task. Something to be done quickly and efficiently. But that is not something that a toddler or preschooler understands. At the grocery store, there is a brand new array of sights to see and people to meet. Rather than hurry thru the task and beat down that curiosity as I have tried to do with the older two, when I thought efficiency mattered more than relationships, I have learned to slow down and embrace our meandering pace thru the store. When we do that, we create margin in our lives. Margin that allows us to meet new people in the aisles of the store.

Because I have the opportunity to craft our day as we will, I have the opportunity to create space. I have the gift of time. That gift can be shared with others. Like the greeter at our local box store. She is a delightful retired kindergarten teacher who smiles brightly at every customer. We also met the cat lady who was recently divorced. She was having a bad day and our fifteen minute conversation gave her a bright spot in her lonely evening. Or countless other random conversations where I have been able to offer hope and encouragement to others because I was willing to slow down the pace of life. Not because I naturally move slowly, but because I was shown how to be slow by the gift of my little ones

So choose to take it easy. Try to let go of the list and embrace what may come. It feels weird and awkward, but it's worth it. 

1 comment:

  1. I usually forget the list and what was on it anyway so naturally it takes me longer to shop. In that way growing older is a blessing. LOL