The Art of Expecting

Another great run this morning.  Well, it was about an hour and 18 minutes, so we figured about 8 miles, and I felt really good about that...8 miles on Saturday, 8 miles today, and this morning felt really good, like I could have gone further, unlike Saturday when I was happy to be finished.  Eight miles.  Yep, that's good.  I was calculating based on a 10-minute-mile pace. 

We chatted during our run about faith, family, parenting, homes and houses, weaknesses...lots of things about the lives that we're living right now.  Funny how encouraging it can be when you realize that someone else struggles with something similar.  Not that it is good that someone else struggles, but good that I'm not the only one, because sometimes it can feel that way.  We talked about reading other people's blogs and how inspiring they can be, but sometimes how they can almost be discouraging because there are not usually "pulling out my hair" moments.  I was reminded that these inspiring posts are often a small glimpse into someone else's life...their scrapbook if you will, and that they too have challenges...maybe just not blog-worthy ones, or maybe they're just gifted to blog about their challenges and still provide inspiration?  At any rate, they're still inspiring on some level, otherwise I likely wouldn't look forward to reading. 

We talked about expectations.  Setting them too high and being disappointed  later.  Hmm.  Interesting.  You mean someone else gets frustrated by the Christmas tree trimming not being a Norman Rockwell scene?  I thought this might be something that I just needed to quietly modify in my life.  I have been, I'm just not quite where I want to be yet.  I do a pretty good job of setting myself up for disappointment as Tim pointed out to me the other day when I said I want to have a place in the mountains that our family can all come to when they're grown with families so that we can spend a week all together.  That's not unreasonable, right?  See, he knows that I have this image in my head of my grown children pulling into the pebble driveway of this beautiful but rustic cabin of lodge-proportions, one car by one car, children and grandchildren jumping out and running up the steps to the wrap-around deck furnished with adirondack chairs to give their grandma (me) a big hug before heading out to the picture perfect back yard.  Every one of the kids will be there, all happy, successful, content...OK, so I fantasize about these things and then I probably do set myself up for disappointment when it doesn't playout like the movie in my mind.  Over the years, I've done a fairly good job of allowing myself to downplay it a little, but not without reminding myself that i need to just relax and go with the flow.  Not always so easy, and sometimes the very reason why i do miss the small things that can be so beautiful.  It may help knowing that there is someone else (a real someone) that strives everyday to be a great mom and wife and Christian woman that is also working on lowering her expectations a little...enough to find the joy in the small things that could be missed when you're wrapped up in being irritated about things not looking like they did in your imagination. 

Go with the can't be that hard right?  This is a good week to practice...the kids are on "spring break".  We have plans to do fun things...rediscover Lincoln...go to the zoo, the library, the Haymarket...or hang out at the park, watch some TV, ride bikes in the expectation is that we will spend time together.  That's enough.  The bonus will be if we do something that when blogged about looks like it came from a "How to have fun on Spring Break" magazine.  :)

And that 8 miles that I expected we ran according to a 10-minute-mile pace?  It was 7.2 miles, meaning our pace was more like 11 minutes.  OK, I guess we pick up the pace next time right?  Or not.