“Above all else, my son and daughter, don’t trade your life for the trinkets your culture tries to sell as treasure. It’s a sham, a lie, a massive con game. Joy is everywhere, real work is available, and life is your birthright. You didn’t choose it and you don’t need to earn it. Simply – and I do mean simply – enjoy it.”
from The Wheel Will Turn: Reflections On A Quietist Revolution by William Martin
I first read William Martin after hearing him quoted at my daughter’s college convocation. His quote from The Parent’s Tao Te Ching: Ancient Advice for Modern Parents moved me to tears, it so perfectly captured how I was feeling about having my firstborn move away. Subsequently, I used his words in one of my most popular blog posts to date, “Extraordinary in the Ordinary”.
I’m at a different place now. My oldest has been out of the house for a year and a half. I’ve shifted my perspective about parenting just a bit as I’m realizing the days I have with my 16-year-old are short, and the moments with my daughter (when she’s home) are fleeting. These realizations, as well as my turning 50 last month, have me doing the internal reflection, not just about me as a mother, but as a wife and a worker and a woman.
I hope this quote from William’s newest publication brought you a bit of thoughtfulness today – it certainly helped me to think about how to find joy right here, right now.