Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Hobbling Along with Perspective

It’s the Christmas season.

It’s not just a day – but a season.

And really, the generosity, good-will towards men, gratitude and counting of blessings should happen year round, but this is life. We get busy, we get caught up in other year-round activities, and we sometimes forget to remember – a lot of things.

As so often happens (sadly) at this time of year when everyone is in a rush, I witnessed exchange of heated words the other day between a young guy who apparently ‘stole’ a parking spot and a grandmother seated in her car, shaking her fist through her window.

“Come here and say it a little louder so my grandson can hear you!” she shouted at the young guy who apparently said something horrific I couldn’t quite hear. Her three-year-old-ish grandson would later follow her out of the car.

“Bring it on!” responded the young guy as he chuckled at her threats.

And it went on and on, back and forth.


All that over a parking spot.

I relayed this story to two cashiers in a store shortly after.

“Perspective, people, perspective!” They both chanted. We all got on such a rage about the whole thing, I was sure pitchforks and torches were about to be raised.

I would only later realize I need to apply those ‘perspective’ thoughts to myself.

Previously, I had been moaning about my lack of writing time and all the incidents and challenges that threatened my writing time over the last two past months. I moaned and groaned and slumped and whined. But determination stoked a major fire under my butt, and I have been writing like a madwoman ever since.

And then I tripped and fell, twisting both ankles and spraining my foot. The same foot that, only the day before the fall, I was told had plantar fasciitis – the cause of pain and limping that had been slowing me down for months and months.

Argh!! Why? It’s been a year of weird (relatively insignificant) health issues! If it’s not one thing, it’s another! Just when I got my writing on track!

Feeling a tad sorry for myself, I limped home from the hospital following my x-rays and carrying a note from the emergency room doctor excusing me from work. Yes, many would jump for joy at this notion, but not only was I worrying about what my place of employment might say, but I was feeling kind of defeated. This was just ‘one more thing.’ I have stuff I gotta do! It’s Christmas! I can’t laze around all day!

Mid-limp, however, I stopped. Wait a second. This isn’t so bad. This is ONLY temporary. This is NOT life-threatening. I am fortunate to HAVE a job. I am fortunate to HAVE a home to go to. I’ve been through worse before, I will get over this, too! This is NOT major. And all this time I have been moaning about the fact that I don’t have time to write – well, NOW IS THE TIME!

Bad: gimped foot.

Good: time to write.

Talk about silver lining.

Perspective, Lisa, perspective.

There are much greater things in this world to moan about – things bigger, greater and well beyond my busy/chaotic/stressful little world of cooking, cleaning, working, being a mother, and dealing with silly little gimped feet. I have it easy. I forgot to remember that I have the wherewithal to write – the freedom to write what I want – in the first place. Why let another little hiccup in things ‘trip me up,’ so to speak.

Things don’t always go as planned, but it’s about gaining perspective and an attitude change that gets us through the challenges that seem huge at the time. A ‘stolen’ parking spot, a gimped foot....these are little things. Bigger things would be not having a foot at all. Bigger things would not have a car to drive.

Bigger things would be.....would be too many awful things to mention.

When bemoaning terrible atrocities of the world, many folks say “at least we have our health.”

And it’s true.

I have my health - and I can write about it.

Thanks for reading!


  1. You left the power sentence until the end. "You have your health - and you can write about it."

    Absolutely! As I watch a dear friend struggle to survive her illness each day - you nailed it Lisa. Without one's health, everything else pales in comparison.

    A timely reflection for the holiday season. Thank you.

    1. Thank you, Jodie! Sending hugs to your friend. Lisa