There is a line someplace in middle age where “just do it” is replaced by “just think about it.” Really maybe there is a series of such lines as we get older. A friend’s comments on driving through snow to get to a family Thanksgiving triggered these thoughts.. (More)
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When I was 10 years old my family drove from Minnesota to visit my cousins in Nebraska for Thanksgiving. It was a dark and stormy night. Actually it was a blizzard. My mom finally convinced my dad who was driving to pull into a roadside diner. The place was filled with traveling families and truck drivers who had all abandoned their trips and decided to wait it out.
My dad was a “just do it” kind of guy who put a lot of emphasis on the role of determination and getting things done. I recall the conversation between my parents in the front seat. My dad was sure if he kept driving eventually he’d get through ‘this rough patch.’ My mom, generally a low conflict person was into her back up mode of speaking truth to power. She got to the point of telling my dad it was crazy to be driving in this and no turkey was worth dying for. Most of the time mom just let dad attack life in his own way and he just let her do her own thing in her own way.
On another Thanksgiving, my mom had mentioned that she thought the kitchen floor needed replacing. She made this comment a couple of days before Thanksgiving. My ‘no time like the present’ dad went and got all the supplies on Wednesday and started in. I can still see my mom carefully walking along the exposed joists preparing the holiday meal while my dad was hammering new plywood subfloor trying to stay out of the stove to sink path. My mom was the parent from whom I learned, “Let’s just think about this.”
The older I get, the more I find myself just thinking about this and the less I find myself rushing to just do it. Some of this change is related to living in a 66 year old body. Most of it is due to having watched myself and others rush in as fools where angels fear to tread.
Enjoy your Thanksgiving!