Yesterday the mailman delivered a precious little book titled Looking for Lovely by Marietta native Annie F. Downs. By noon today I had read the whole thing cover to cover. I contemplated coffee around 8:30 last night and just forego sleep all together as I hit the midway point. While I didn’t get picked for this launch team (thanks a lot, sally!) a few of my book launching nerd friends did. They loved it and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on a copy.
In efforts to read a little more I have recently added Love Does by Bob Goff and Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson. While each of these books are individually unique to their author, together they taught me to be a live life a little freer. To enjoy the little things and the crazy things.
For the past few weeks a line from Alice and wonderland has been playing in my head.
“But I don’t want to go among mad people,” Alice remarked.
“Oh, you can’t help that,” said the Cat: “we’re all mad here. I’m mad. You’re mad.”
“How do you know I’m mad?” said Alice.
“You must be,” said the Cat, “or you wouldn’t have come here.”
― Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
with spring break looming and the final push before testing starts, my days have been filled with the black tears only made possible my middle school eye liner. I think somewhere around Tuesday of last week I went a little mad. All bets were off on enjoying the sweet moments as life was just producing moments of chaos. The sweet had quickly turned to salty.
In efforts to deal with grief I’ve learned to focus on the little things. Tiny moments packed with joy. While this sweet sentimental side of me is a newly acquired trait, my ability to cope with chaos remains. When the uncontrollable chaos starts, I lose what little filter I have and turn to sarcasm. I don’t turn to unhealthy coping mechanisms, I just start cracking jokes and witty one liners… ok and sometimes I drink wine too. When my stress level goes up, so does my crazy.
While my lose filter isn’t always the greatest trait, my other coping mechanism is crafting. That’s healthy right?! It quiets my mind to work with my hands and I can return to my sweet self my mother swears she raised me to be.
Some times though, my coping strategies collide and my friends get little gifts because I’m out of shelf space. Recently my friends have been recipients of various drinking vessels with quotes on them. My recent acquisition of a silhouette cameo opened a whole new world of sticking vinyl on everything has upped my crafting game. My favorite of the vessels was a coffee cup with the phrase “When I think about my books, I touch my shelf“. Never has there ever been a better play on words. I wish I’d come up with it myself. The recipient of said cup may also share a coping mechanism of mine and a few delightful personality traits which made this gift more humorous than it should have been.
While I do wacky things from time to time, I do enjoy the quiet moments with a really good book. These books don’t have some grand a-ha chapter at the end but what they do have is life. Stories to encourage you and make you appreciate the little thing. Stories that make you laugh out loud and some that just make you want to go paint your toes a funny sparkly color.
While I still have room to grow on making little moments matter and loving my people well, I think I’ll keep my lack of a filter and one liners. Life is too short to be serious and I’d rather drink from a slightly inappropriate coffee mug.
But in all seriousness, go buy Annie’s Book.