Linda Wood Rondeau

Having the Prime of My Life

WE ARE PROFESSIONALS
Wednesday, June 26, 2024 by ANN CAVERA

PLEASE WELCOME

*ANN CAVERA

TO

HAVING THE PRIME OF MY LIFE

 

My son and his wife have two sets of twins. Many years ago, when my grandkids were young, I was at their house babysitting for the day. At the time, the girls were about five. I’d just put their baby brothers down for their nap, and I wondered how I could entertain two energetic preschool granddaughters. We needed an activity that would be interesting and quiet (very, very quiet) to ensure their brothers would take good, long naps. 

So, I asked them, “Why don’t we color?” They liked the idea. We each ripped a page from a coloring book. I spread the crayons across the dining room table and said, “Girls, we are going to work really hard on these pages because they will be hanging on your refrigerator for a long time.” This was Granny-speak for, please, let’s not make much noise. and please, please let this take at least an hour.

So, the three of us bent over our pictures. Soon, serious coloring absorbed our energies. No one said a word until little Cate put down her crayon. With all the total frustration only a five-year-old could summon she said, “Grandma, I can’t stay inside the lines.”

The teacher in me perked up. I could still recognize a teachable moment when one hit me over the head. “That’s alright Sweetie. Sometimes I can’t stay in the lines, either. Anyway, it’s not about staying in the lines. Coloring is about doing our best work just because that’s the kind of people we are. We are people who enjoy doing our best work.”

With her little head bent over her picture, Cate went back to coloring. Without lifting her crayon or missing a beat she announced, “Yes, that’s because we’re professionals.”

Wow! In a flash, I became a student. What a perfect description of a life lived in love. With our hearts centered on love, we become professional bearers of joy. We make mistakes but keep plugging along because when love is at the core, doing our best is our only option.  

Those grandkids are teenagers now. They drive themselves over here to have lunch or help me with chores. All four grandkids are strong, happy people and are the light and joy of my life.

Yet, everywhere I go many people appear to be miserable. All around me, I see desperate, lonely people trying so hard to stay inside the lines. When this proves to be impossible, many try to ease the perpetual pain of never being quite good enough with drugs, food, sex, money, or by burying mistakes beneath more stuff. Others give up and walk around in grey twilight wondering how much longer they can paste a smile on their face and keep putting one foot in front of the other.

I want to hug each of them and whisper, “You don’t have to live this way.” No matter how hopeless life seems, we can still swim in a great current of joy.

Whatever we do to earn our bread and butter—whether it’s washing dishes in a restaurant, being a CEO of a company, or making art and music—those are side gigs. There is a way to live in joy, hope, and deep inner calm. It happens when we understand our life work is to be professional bearers of Love. It’s a matter of opening our hearts, letting love in, and pouring love out. And, guess what? No matter how hard we try, there will still be days when none of us can stay inside the lines.

ABOUT ANN CAVERA

Ann Cavera is the host of the weekly podcast, “Speeding Past 80,” brief stories of faith, hope, love, and laughter. (Apple, Spotify, Podbean.) She is the author of the young adult novel, Ride a Summer Wind. Elk Lake Publishing, March 2024.   

BUY LINK

ABOUT RIDE A SUMMER WIND

Lutie McBride and his granddaughter, Buddie, (and their small town of Whistler, Indiana) come to life in this captivating mystery for kids. Novelist Ann Cavera brilliantly weaves a stolen vase, Abraham Lincoln, secret caves, a teenage crush, mandolins and banjos, and much more together, resulting in a multi-faceted story that kids will love. - Jennifer Grant, award-winning author of many books for adults and children.

*(author photo by J. D. Pooley)

 

 


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