This Too Shall Pass

fence-shotWhenever I’ve found myself in a tough spot, I almost always have the presence of mind to think, “This too shall pass.” Whether it’s a time of heartache, a period of loss, a season of disappointment, it always passes. Sometimes it might be giving blood, and another time it could be walking the floor with a colicky baby. Whether a brief moment of disappointment or  years of pain, it always passes.  

Monday I had somewhat of a wake-up call. Cruising along I-95 towards my daughter’s home near Savannah, I was listening to Eckhart Tolle read his book, A New Earth, on my iPod. I had tried to read the book a few months ago but found it hard to stay focused. Listening, however, was different, better. Anyway, he mentioned the above statement, and I thought, “Oh yes, wisdom of the ages.” But this is when he said something that I’d thought of many times before, just not in the context of this phrase. (He actually said, “This too will pass,” but I like using shall, so…….)

So this is what Tolle said that rocked my world, at least for a few moments. “This too will pass” relates to all the good stuff too–the happy, joyful, exhilarating, giddy moments of life. Yes, I already knew that, and yet there was just something about being reminded of it on the way to visit with my daughter and her family that resonated with me. Although I was only in their home a couple of days, that phrase came back to haunt me (in a manner of speaking) many times. Everything is so transient that it’s a little scary to think about.

Carrie is the mother of four very busy little people, the oldest of whom will turn 6 in a few weeks. The baby was born in February, and two beautiful little girls are in-between these two boys. Consequently, Carrie’s life is busy and zooey. Whether it’s laundry, food preparation, dish washing, floor mopping, or chauffeuring  the children to school, dance, church, or baseball, she’s the girl in a whirl. Yesterday I volunteered to watch the baby and Emma, an impish 2-year old, so that Carrie and Brooke could go to Wal-Mart for some basic provisions. She was delighted to be able to go with just one child, especially since it was one that is usually pretty obedient.

I reminded her (that’s my job as a mother) that these crazy days and sleep deprived nights would pass, that one day she’d be able to shop all day to her heart’s content in any store she wanted to. Right now, however, some great stuff is going on. As we were chatting, Emma and Brooke were both holding their baby dolls, and Emma had just said, “Don’t cry, Baby. It’s okay, Baby,” in the most soothing voice you can imagine. Soon thereafter, I painted their toenails and fingernails, and Emma actually squealed with delight. All this time Carrie was nursing the baby, something that only she can do. She had her eye on the clock the whole time because soon it’d be time to stop everything, strap the children in the van, and pick up Braden from school.

I  know I’m not  doing justice to the concept, but hey, this isn’t meant to be an English essay that I’m getting graded on. I just want to get across the strong impression that I received Monday that NOW, right this very moment is where life takes place. Now, not yesterday or some hoped-for tomorrow. NOW.

The picture is of the three older children taken about a month ago. As you can see, their attire is a little “different,” but that was a day in the life of the Maseda family…already gone. I’ve always been pretty good at it, but since Monday I’ve been making more of an effort to consciously notice and appreciate the moments. Why? You know why…because this too will pass.

Author: jayne bowers

*married with children, stepchildren, grandchildren, in-laws, ex-laws, and a host of other family members and fabulous friends *semi-retired psychology instructor at two community colleges *writer

5 thoughts on “This Too Shall Pass”

  1. Thanks for the reminder. Sometimes I don’t remember to just cherish the few moments that don’t drive me crazy right now. The other day I was driving down the road with Kelsey and she and I were talking, and I was just overwhelmed by how charming she really is. Now if I could just hang on to that feeling when she’s driving me nuts!

    I know exactly what you mean. One day a few decades ago, I was following Carrie and her little friend into the dance studio where they were going for their weekly lessons. I was tired and thinking of "getting this over with" so that I could prepare dinner, bathe the girls, wash clothes, and so forth. You know the story! Anyway, as I looked at them, I saw beyond them into the glass door where I could see their reflections and that of Elizabeth's too. She was about 3 and was wearing a cute little smocked dress. She was holding my hand and looking down as she tried to navigate the step up to get to the door. It hit me in a flash how fortunate I was to have the opportunity to take the little leotard clad girls to dance and to spend 45 minutes with this precious toddler.

  2. yes, pass too too qyickly….ii was feeling bad not being a bishop or on the high counsel but then i decided i really couldn’t do it, i am so old, i can harly take care of my home teaching people, how could i serve a ward?????

    I might be looking at it incorrectly, but I don't think there are any small jobs in the church. I KNOW you're serving in a positive way...starting with your blog.

  3. How important this really is! I used to find myself wishing the week away…I make more of an effort to appreciate each day. Remember that saying Yesterday is History, Tomorrow is a Mystery, the Present is a Gift or something like that. I thought you were in New York.

    I love that quote! We’re leaving Saturday morning. One of these days we’re going to have to make that trip together!

  4. I’ve been thinking about this topic as well lately. So much has been going on lately I haven’t really had the time to appreciate the wonderfulness of my kids.

  5. Thanks Jayne! I always get so frustrated with the stuff everywhere and have to remind myself one day all the stuff will be gone! No fingerprints, spilled milk, toys, etc. We need to do major house/yardwork last weekend, but nobody felt exceptionally well and we just went camping instead. We enjoyed nature and all the beautiful things that will also…pass.

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