the unintended consequence of thank you

WARNING: GRAPHIC AND SHOCKING IMAGES INCLUDED IN THIS BLOGPOST!!!!!!

so this morning–the day after thanksgiving, the day when i should be out wilding in the shopping mall–i sat down as i always do and wrote down ten things i am grateful for.  at the top of the list was that yesterday my son eastman and his girlfriend drove me downtown so that we might have thanksgiving dinner with my ex-husband and my older son.

under our divorce agreement, my ex-husband and i share thanksgiving, christmas, mother’s day and father’s day.  some people think we’re weird.  i think we’re just playing nice.  besides, who wants to be a kid in the middle of a tug of war between two parents who each have a large, hot poultry as a potential weapon?

i concluded a three month period of not having an official residence (some might say being homeless) with moving into an apartment in kenilworth, illinois.  it’s over an abandoned warehouse and is very flashdance.

the 1983 film flashdance tells the tired and somewhat hackneyed story of an eighteen year old welder and exotic dancer who aspires to be a ballerina. this young lady lived in an apartment in an abandoned warehouse. all i need is a dance and welding double and i’m living just like the movie!

because i’m living alone for the first time in so many years, i have a very girly, all white, pristine, long on white lace and throw pillows bedroom.  this is what i have now (avert your eyes if necessary):

this is the sort of mess that is now all over my bedroom, bathroom and living room. even my car–empties and cigarettes and wadded up bags from steak n’shake.  my son and his girlfriend have been wonderful albeit messy guests!

i used to be the sort of mom who could fly into a rage over this stuff.  and now i say thank you because it isn’t all that long before i have to take him back to school.  so i have chosen to enjoy this visit instead of “pick up those towels and get your clothes off the floor, damn it!”  i mean, after all, i’m going to be the one cleaning this stuff up no matter what i say so why stress?  and i’m having a better relationship with my son and his girlfriend because of that.  it’s been a wonderful thanksgiving weekend!

and i think this joy is the unintended consequence of thank you.


2 responses to “the unintended consequence of thank you

  • tonytyner

    Nice shift of thinking. . :-) My ex. was/is a neat freak and I was/am like Oscar of the Odd Couple. So we clashed often and after she left, my house became the relaxed zone for the kids and I. Whenever my dad would come over, after the divorce he’d look around at the messy house, smile and say “Ah, it looks live in!!” He hated the living rooms with the plastic covered furntiture that no one dare enter. To him this was like home.
    You’re bedroom looks definitely lived in!!

  • Don Wainwright

    This generation grows up more quickly but matures much more slowly. Patience is a spiritual exercise in grace.

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