Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Word of the Year: 2013 Edition

My word this year is peace, but first I want to talk about war.  Five years ago today Jay left for deployment.  Every year after Christmas he laughs because I always say, "Aren't you glad you're not getting ready to go to the desert this year?"  And that's usually all I say about it, but every year on this day I find myself thinking back to that day and I realized today that it's because I think of it much like I do my kids' birthdays.  It was a day I did the impossible and got through it.  

Before I had kids I could imagine life before kids (obviously that wasn't too hard) and I could imagine life after kids (as well as someone can before they've actually had kids), but the whole having a kid?  I couldn't even begin to fathom how that was going to actually take place.  And similarly, I could imagine what it would be like for Jay to be gone for a long time, but actually taking him somewhere and saying goodbye and leaving without him?  I was pretty sure I was just going to implode.  But I didn't.  Somehow, those kids got out of there and somehow, I got in the car and drove away without him.  So every June 5 and June 10 I'm thinking about what I was doing at that time and every January 8 is the same.  And there are so many others still going through this.  But on to peace...

I'm not going to lie to you.  I really don't get much of the world we live in.  Some days I think pretty much everyone is crazy.  Even if you aren't dealing with something like deployment, it seems like world affairs and horrible events are touching our lives more and more.  And I'm not a big fan of that.  Not long after the election I read this article (by one of my favorite writers) that included this quote by Barbara Bush:

“Whatever the era, whatever the times, one thing will never change: Fathers and mothers, if you have children, they must come first. You must read to your children and you must hug your children. Your success as a family, our success as a society, depends not on what happens in the White House but on what happens inside your house.” 


She also includes this quote from Mother Teresa I had never seen but I think is one of the most true things I've ever read:

“I think the world today is upside down. Everybody seems to be in such a terrible rush, anxious for greater development and greater riches and so on. There is much suffering because there is so very little love in homes and in family life. We have no time for each other; there is no time to enjoy each other. In the home begins the disruption of peace in the world.” 

So this year I'm working on peace in my home.  I can't change foreign policy or alter social trends, but I can raise my children to love God, to love their family, and to love others.  I can make my home a safe place to land for my family.  I can control our calendar to make sure we're having plenty of down time and I can shut off the screens when we need to.  

In 2013 I will go home and love my family.