I'm the kind of girl who likes to live for a purpose. This is easy when I'm actually busy. You know, when I'm working 60-70 hours a week, having a social life, being around the kids I love, singing at my church.
Aside from those things though, a girl can get lost in the endless supply of mindless activities that leave one feeling kinda funky. And not cool music on a Tuesday night at the Maple Leaf kinda funky, but the other kind of funky. The kind where you can forget to take showers because you have no place to go for a few days kinda funky.
So anyway, being out of my normal routine and trying to establish a new one has been more difficult than I thought it'd be this summer. Assuming I'd find a steady source of income, I moved in with my parents back home to save some money. What resulted was a summer full of unsteady work, no money, and endless hours at the gym because really, if I'm going to spend my mornings watching "Say Yes to the Dress," I might as well be on the treadmill while I do it, thus increasing the chances that I might one day get to look nice in one of those dresses myself (or so I tell myself).
Typically the most exciting part of my day involves heading over to a friend's house, where talk about life and I get to play with her kids. Maybe if I get really lucky, the baby will poop and I'll change a diaper, thus giving me a hint of a purpose for about twenty seconds.
While itching to get back to NY, I'm trying to embrace this "vacation." The little bit of work I have gotten involves listening to free live music by some of my favorite artists, so that's kinda like vacation, and then I babysit in a really cool neighborhood.
Today I decided to stop moping, and start embracing life Danielle style again. Refusing to give into the funk. I've been gifted with this amazing ability to see all of the amazing little blessings God gives us EVERY day, but lately I've been brushing those blessings aside and asking for more. Never being satisfied. This is not cool.
So today, I had one of the most "normal" days I could have for someone who has no job and no kids to take care of. I went to the New Orleans Museum of Art, as it was free day today. I spent about fifteen minutes in the guest shop enjoying THIS book. I packed a bag lunch with peanut butter and jelly, some terra chips, and two oreos, as well as a VIA packet of the Starbucks refreshers and sat by the ducks in City Park while watching young families stroll about and not feeling the least bit jealous. I took a stroll through the sculpture garden, which, fyi, IS free and is not part of the standard admission to the museum (as I had previously thought). I finished off my nifty little day in the sunshine by trying a snoball place I hadn't tried before, and being pleasantly satisfied to find out that it was ranked as one of the most crowded places to spend an afternoon for a reason (and I EMBRACED the long line, enjoying the satisfied look of teenagers enjoying snowballs on the sidewalk, and dad's buying cotton candy flavored treats for their kiddos).
Today I was reminded of how I prefer to view life. Rather than always seeking the next opportunity, I had to step back and embrace the day. Yes I'm ready to start grad school, but I'm vowing to take advantage of the time I have now - as I won't have much time to enjoy the little things once paper writing takes over. I'm taking the Francie Nolan approach to the next month, and despite the fact that Im not watching the trees grow in Brooklyn, I'm really having a heck of a time enjoying the moss-covered vines of New Orleans.
"Dear God, let me be something every minute of every hour of my life. Let me be gay; let me be sad. Let me be cold; let me be warm. Let me be hungry...have too much to eat. Let me be ragged or well-dressed. Let me be sincere- be deceitful. Let me be truthful; let me be a liar. Let me be honorable and let me sin. Only let me be something every blessed minute. And when I sleep, let me dream all the time so that not one little piece of living is ever lost." - Francie Nolan, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn