A adage that’s been around since what seems like the beginning of time. A phrase that’s short and sweet but means so much and means something different to every person. I’d be surprised to met a person who hasn’t said this common proverb at some point in their life. For me it was a phrase that didn’t have much meaning until I was older. In your teenage years you make dumb choices and think the smallest hiccup in life is the biggest crisis in life. In your early/mid twenties you still make dumb choices and then realize that you have to adult with life and panic and start trying to be responsible. In your late twenties shit gets real and you realize that life is happening, it’s happening too quickly and it’s an unstoppable train that you’re trying to keep on the tracks.
While you’re trying to control the uncontrollable that’s when the little things count. A lot of people use the our little phrase in context to a relationship. Don’t get me wrong. It’s the little things is a rule in our house really. Last weekend we had a pretty busy weekend. I was exhausted. I was hungry and told Tim I needed food but didn’t want to get up. He jumped right up and heated up some leftover meatloaf and couscous for me without hesitation. He brought me milk, ketchup, and a napkin and asked if there was anything else he could do. I know, some of you may be thinking, “Well, you’re pregnant. Of course he should do those things.” The thing is, he doesn’t. Just like I don’t have to make him breakfast in the morning. He has two hands. It’s the little things we do for each other that makes every day a good day.
Doing the little things for your partner or spouse is great. I’m more thinking about the little things that you learn to do for yourself. It’s been on my mind a lot lately because the amount of things I can do is dwindling. Even bending over to feed the kitties is becoming an Olympic event for me. How many times a day do we do things for other people? At work your job is literally to give some sort of service to someone else. In a marriage you focus on what that person needs that day. As a parent you obsess on what your child needs 24/7. Hell, even going out in public we put on pants and say “Excuse me” when bumping into someone (well, most of us. I’m talking to the guy at the store yesterday, learn some manners, dude. Who was your mother?). The point is, we live in such an individualized society but are taught to take other people into consideration for almost every part of our life. It might be so you never feel alone. It might be so we don’t raise a society of self-entitled a-holes. I sometimes wonder how well we are doing with that, but that’s a different post.
It’s important to learn that the universe is an expanding realm with millions of planets rotating around it. The center of that universe is not you. It’s important to realize that but it’s also important to learn that sometimes you need to have a gravitational pull towards yourself. Take a moment every day and do or think something for yourself. I know, I know. “Kicky Housewife, I don’t have time for that! I have a job or kids or spouse or commitments” choose your category. The thing is we don’t have to choose the martyr category. I’m not saying you should take a two hour period every day and focus solely on yourself. I’m saying that you should take at least a minute every day and do something little for yourself. You can have that cup of cocoa and take a deep breathe. Go to the bathroom and look in the mirror and say, “Looking gooooood”. Read an article on-line about your secret hobby or obsession. Look up husky puppies on Google images (you’re welcome). Do something just for you, even if it’s just for a minute.
We are all on this unstoppable train. That’s a fact. The thing is we don’t have to let the scenery rush past us. There is nothing to stop us from taking a seat and taking a minute to look at the mountains outside the window. Take that minute, take a deep breathe, and take in that view. You can rush back to the control panel after a minute. I know I do. I try to control so many aspects of my and my family’s life but I also take a second to sit down with my decaf coffee and look at the article about 40 things you didn’t know about the Titanic. I hope I keep doing little things for myself because I know that it’s something I need. It’s not being selfish, it’s taking care of me. If I fall asleep at the control panel then what happens to that train? Exactly. It’s the little things. Keep the adage alive and keep going on the train. It’s bound to be a beautiful ride, enjoy it.