This post is part of my cornerstone content, written years ago, updated for today and still inspiring wisdom and deep understanding.
I can still remember like it was yesterday.
After living in Brazil for over a year, it was time for us to move back home to Michigan. Everything that didn’t stay with the house had either been packed up, thrown out, or given away.
It was early morning as I drank my coffee, thinking about the day ahead. We had at least three separate flights starting in Sao Paulo, going through Houston, and ending in Cleveland, followed by a 4-hour drive to Ortonville, MI. By the time we got home, our travel time would be well over 30 hours.
I thought about Garrett, who was 8 years old at the time. I worried the stress would cause me to get mean and snap at him because, unfortunately, it’s happened before. I truly wanted this time to be different. Even if our trip wasn’t going to be fun, couldn’t it at least be peaceful?
A plea for help
Knowing my attitude was a major contributing factor to the happiness of my family inspired me to reach out to my Captain for help.
As I poured out the remnants of my coffee and washed the cup in the sink, I remember saying a quick little prayer in my head. My prayer was simple, concise, and no-nonsense because God’s not petty. In my heart, I was saying, “Dear Lord, help me to focus on creating a beautiful life and healthy relationships so we can move forward together without any unnecessary drama. Amen.”
What I actually said was “Dear God, I need some help getting through this trip without turning into a complete b$#tch. So, if you could help me get out of my own way and just do my best to enjoy this, I’d really appreciate it.”
You know, simple.
As I walked toward the bedroom to go wake up Garrett, this song started playing in my head.
By the time I reached his bedroom door, my smile was a mile wide. I jumped up onto his bed, saying, “Rise and shine, sleepyhead! We’re going home today!” I told him about the song, and he absolutely loved it! We both laughed and bounced together for a minute longer before getting started on our trip home.
I still use that song when I recognize myself feeling stressed because it still happens. Seriously, the lizard never goes away! We can’t stop the stress. All we can change is how we handle it.
I’ve shared this story with dozens of people of all ages, trying to offer a smile and a little hope. Most folks report back later with a smile and a thank you because it really does work. Even for people who don’t like SpongeBob (yes, there are a few), there are plenty of songs that create a light-hearted flow, a bounce for your step, and a little boogie in your bunda.
Think about it, my friendly blog reader.
Do you have a song to help you get out of your own way?
I’d love for you to share it in the comments below!