"Leave a meaningful post," my husband said to me, after I started my blog. "Define meaningful," I wanted to ask, but knew better. If you knew my husband you’d know that asking any kind of open-ended question will either lead to a smart-assed retort or a thoughtful reply that we can generate into hours of verbal fun. And I mean that in a good way. My husband gives really good mind. 🙂
My son’s pretending to cut my hair (after a trip to the salon today) and the baby wants to nurse, and I’ve only had about 3 hours of sleep. Sleep is meaningful, especially when you haven’t had any. I should know. I think in the last 5 years I’ve only slept about 6 months worth. Life has certainly been eventful, and that’s meaningful too.
This weekend got me thinking though. It’s an anniversary of sorts. My husband and I met face-to-face for the first time over Labor Day weekend. That meeting changed my life, and there’s not much more meaningful than that. One day I might detail how we met. Our coming together is the sort of thing that I’ve only seen in movies and read about in books – it just doesn’t happen in real life, and certainly not in mine, until I met him. It was magical, ethereal, the stuff that dreams are made of, and more precisely, the stuff that dreams made. It was one of the most spiritual events in my life, on several levels.
Labor Day weekend also makes me think of labor. Not the kind the holiday was intended for, great American labor and ingenuity, but labor as in giving birth, and that’s pretty meaningful too, to bring life into the world. All total, I’ve spent about 72 hours of my life in labor. I’ve spent 7 & 1/2 years (and counting!) breastfeeding my children and I consider that to be one of the most meaningful things I’ve done. I may not win mother of the year, but I’ve given my babies the best start I could. And I hope that’s meaningful.
I look around our place and see the boxes as we are preparing to move, I see my baby toddling about and my son in his Spiderman costume, and in a way it all gels. This is what life is about. It’s not the big things, it’s the little things, the day-to-day raising of your family, the little gestures of thoughtfulness, making dinner and doing laundry, spending time just hanging out as a family. This is what meaningful is about. Giving meaning to the moments, making them count, making them peaceful and a comfort; keeping, as best we can, bad things from happening. Yes, there are monsters out there, all kinds of bad things that can and do happen, and I guess I’ve learned that as much as we want to make wonderful things happen, sometimes preventing the bad things from happening can be just as much, if not more, meaningful.