Confession time—I am a “Hands-On” Nana. I am not a grandmother that sits by the pool with her drink in her hand wearing a big hat and waving (ta da) at her grandchildren. Instead, I am in the pool with them and they are swimming under my legs or they are splashing me with pool noodles.
I was blessed to have two “Hands-On” Nana Days last week. They included breakfast at Krispy Kreme where we wore Krispy Kreme hats; we made two batches of “snow”–one using baking soda and hand lotion and the other using cornstarch and shaving cream; we performed science experiments; played card games—they were truly “Hands-On” Nana Days.
And this year—I want to be a “Hands-On” Janet.
“Hands-On”. What does that mean? I am not sure exactly…..but I think it means being truly involved with life… not just sitting back and watching …..being willing to take chances and make a few messes….. and maybe, in the process, being willing to share my heart with those around me.
As readers know, last month I had hip replacement surgery. In 2017, due to chronic pain and difficulties walking, I put my life on hold. I would think “once I get through my hip surgery, I will be able to ________”.
But I have discovered something….. if you live your life on hold it becomes a habit…. You become less willing to take risks and more willing to settle for the status quo and let life slip by.
I don’t want life to merely slip by—I want to have a life where I am active and trying new things…. I want to be able to amaze myself from time to time—to do something outside my comfort zone so I can say “wow, I did that!”
But I also think “Hands On” means learning how to value the ordinary moments in your life ….. because when you cherish the boring ordinary moments of day to day life you elevate them…. the making of dinner…. bedtime routines with children….. walking from the parking deck to your office…..When you learn to savor these small moments you will see them in a different light ….. and you will feel more alive.
Let me assure you—cornstarch and shaving cream are very ordinary items. Yet, the “Hands On” mindset encouraged me to see these items with my heart, not my mind, and therefore, I found joy as my grandchildren made their “snow” sculptures.
The truth is we have only today—and it is up to us to make it as “Hands On” as possible—to be engaged—and to open our eyes and our hearts to what is around us.
So—my personal challenge for 2018 is….. to try new things….. to open my heart and take some chances….. to be willing to make a few mistakes or messes….. and last but not least….. to treasure the precious ordinary moments in my life.
“Hands-On” Living—I am finally ready for it.