I’ve become more “socially aware” since I started bloggin’. I’ve always been a social butterfly. Lately, I’ve been more of a silent observer. Ok, who I am I kidding? I’ve never been nor will I ever be silent. Maybe just more aware, as of late. Society goings-on make for some great inspiration. One of the things I’ve paid more attention to lately are the activities that families tend to gravitate towards. An activity that each member can enjoy and they all participate in fiercely. If your family doesn’t have a “go to,” pick your poison.
Some families gravitate toward hunting. Others never miss an opportunity to watch “a big game” together. Music, family game night, church, outdoor activities of all sorts, whatever you choose, a “go to” is vital to survival.
Our families “go to” was and still is fishing. Our kids have been fishing since they could hold a rod and reel. Fishing has been the glue that held us together. And the glue that helped put all of the broken pieces back together. Some of my best life memories have been made while clutching a rod, baiting a hook, untangling a bird nest or waiting for a bite.
I don’t even know if my kids really liked fishing in the beginning, but we did it. It was inexpensive. It was convenient.
There was a lot of undesirable moments during those formative years. I hope the family time on the water helped smudge those memories a bit.
One day when Stuart and I are long gone, I hope our kids will borrow a line from Brad Paisley and say that was “time well wasted.” If you’ve never heard the song, “Time Well Wasted” give it a listen. I have a sign hanging in my living room as a reminder of the memories the words of that song stir in my soul.
It doesn’t matter what you’re wasting you’re time doing. It’s just important that you are in fact wasting it as a family.
When I was in my 20’s, “older people” (people my age now) told me to “soak it all in.” You’ve heard all of the cliches. Time flies, don’t blink, enjoy them. They’ll be gone before you know it, and the likes. I heard them all but I wasn’t really listen. I was too busy surviving.
I find myself mimicking the words of those “older people” often. I want to follow up by sayin’, “I know ya hear me, but are ya listening to me?” Sadly, I never follow-up.
The photo albums I’ve kept throughout the years put all of those cliches into perspective. When I was taking those pictures years ago, I had no idea their true value until recently. How could I have known? I was too busy surviving.
One of the biggest fights Stuart and I ever had was over developing a roll of film at Walgreens. Well, several rolls of film. In fact, fifty-something dollars worth of film. It was an extravagant expense at the time, I admit. He appreciates the pictures now. We giggle and reminiscence when we look at them.
I take a lot of pictures. My family has learned to indulge me although irritated at times, I know. It’s ok, one day those pictures will serve as their reminder. I don’t have many photographs from my own childhood. I managed to “steal” a few and divvied them up between my sister and dad, keeping a few for myself. The photographs of my childhood were left in a storage building to rot. I didn’t have access to them. I’m left to my own devices as to how I want to remember certain milestones. Probably best.
Pick your poison, “waste” lots of time and take lots of pictures along the way. I am thankful social media wasn’t a constant when we were bringing our kids up. I wasn’t worried about filters, or presenting the picture perfect family to my followers. I was taking pictures for me.
Hopefully by now, you realize I’m open book. Some may say too open. I say, nah. I doubt seriously I would have tried to portray us as something that we weren’t on social media. I don’t mind people knowing that I’m teeterin’ on the border of sane and coocoo.
Lately, when listening to people, (told ya I was more of an observer here lately), I’ve heard the same type of sentiments regarding social media. Facebook content makes me sad. It makes me angry. I get jealous. Everyone is going on vacation and I’m not. Peoples posts make me feel bad about myself.
Take social media with a grain of salt, folks. I will say, Facebook was my only outlet at a time when I was couch bound, ready to throw in the towel. Social media will be what you allow it to be. I love to watch the show. Heck, I’m a character in the show.
Remember that you don’t know what’s going on in those “picture perfect” family posts. Not everyone is wonky and willing to bare their soul scars to you on a daily basis and well, that’s ok. Grain of salt, folks. Grain of salt.
My wish today, from writer to reader is that you focus your energy on “wasting time.”
Keep it wonky y’all.