It’s All About the Little Things – by Jacquelyn Tyre-Perry
“Don’t take the little things for granted.”
“Be grateful for what you have.”
“Don’t wait until it’s too late.”
“Life is short.”
I’m sure we’ve all heard these saying before. As enlightening as they may be, I find that we don’t put them to use as often as we should.
On January 26, 2020, an entire nation was in disbelief. Kobe Bryant, his 13 year old daughter Gianna, and seven others died in a helicopter accident. I saw all of the above quotes and more throughout the day on social media. I wondered how many people were actually going to put these things into practice.
I’m sure some hugged their loved ones a little tighter that night and prayed hard for all the families involved in that tragic accident, but was it going to be something we actually strive to make a habit, or just while the news was still fresh? I asked myself the same question.
I recently heard on a podcast that practicing 10-15 minutes of gratitude four days a week can boost your immune system by 50%. The funny thing is, once I heard it, I realized it had actually been a while since I’d been sick. There was a time when I could guarantee that I would be down and out for a week at least four times out of the year. My seasonal bronchitis was like clockwork. While I wasn’t setting a timer and breaking out a journal, I had made a commitment to be more present, not focus on the things I can’t control, and be grateful for what I woke up to everyday.
I did just that. I would watch my kids laughing together and just take a moment to soak it in- the best sounds in the world. I would watch my husband cook breakfast and thank the universe for putting us in each other’s paths. I would drive to work and be grateful for my 15 minute commute and that I actually get to work with people I like.
Rather than just telling the people around you that you love them, show them. Practice gratitude. Show up in the world as the best you possible. Hug your kids tight every night. Life is indeed short, but it’s our responsibility to live it as best as we can while we can.
Jacquelyn Tyre-Perry is the School Age Recreation Specialist for the City of Manassas Park, Department of Parks and Recreation. She can be reached at 703-335-8872 or via email at J.Tyre-Perry@ManassasParkVA.gov