Happy surprises to you!


Christmas Day breakfast…I don’t think that I ate more than three bites, but who cares when you are sharing a meal (literally) with those you love!

This past Christmas Eve, Jack and I decided to take Griffin (our one and a half year old grandson) out for the morning. It was almost 70 degrees here in the northeast, so we were able to stroll around the small, Vermont, town of Vergennes, without jackets or boots….lovely.

Keeping up with Griffin is an adventure. He loves to run which is OK on grass but not on cement sidewalks, so to make him happy, Jack took his right hand and I took his left, and we began to jog up the sidewalk. Griffin alternated between running and dragging his feet, but we were all having a great time.

When we finally reached the car to go home, I noticed a man standing nearby staring at us. I smiled and said hi to him, but he scowled back at me and said, “I’m glad that you finally picked up that baby. He was very tired.” I couldn’t get my mind around what he meant, but as I was hooking Griffin into his car seat, it dawned on me that the man thought that Jack and I had been making Griffin run, and he wasn’t happy about it. And who could blame him? If that were the case, then it would have been awful. I too would have been upset to see anyone dragging a baby along.

But that wasn’t what was happening.

The three of us were having a great time, and this man, for whatever reason, was having a terrible time watching us. I sat there a minute before driving away and noticed that the man’s face looked hard. I could just tell that no matter what I said, he wouldn’t believe that reality was anything but what he was sure he had witnessed.

Over the past few days, I’ve thought about this incident a lot. I could feel that it was a lesson for me. How many times have I been 100% sure that my unhappy story about something (anything) was correct? How many times was I willing to stay in pain to defend my own unpleasant version of an encounter? Probably too many times to count…but I also know that this is changing, because when I do find myself thinking unhappy, miserable, angry, or sad thoughts, something inside me now says, “That is only one way of looking at this. This is happening for you…if you look for the good, the gold, the Truth, you will see that.” It is such a happy surprise to find that our minds can change and we can see with new eyes the good that is all around us. May 2016 be filled with happy surprises for you! Love, Mary

“We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.” Anais Nin



10 thoughts on “Happy surprises to you!

  1. Hi Mary and what an adorable grandson you have. Maybe this man who saw you and Jack having a good time with Griffin was a very unhappy man who has had a hard life and can’t see the joy in much of anything life has to offer and has to put a negative spin on everything. I’m glad you had such a good day.

  2. Mary, such wisdom in your words. Your grandson is beautiful, happy & I am sure loves running with his grandparents. Wishing you & Jack a happy, healthy, promising, New Year. Hugs with love, Dee

  3. It is about our perspective & where WE are coming from! I am learning this. Thanks for the reminder! Also, thanks for teaching me about projecting my emotions / energy without saying a word. I put it to excellent use on Christmas Eve with mostly positive results!

  4. I see…”the good, the gold, the Truth”…right there in Griffin’s eyes and in each of your smiles! I love this post! Thank you Mary and wishing you and Jack and your entire family the most wonderful 2016! 💝

  5. Mary, both the picture and your words are heartwarming on this very miserable day here an hour north of Toronto in a countryside that is under snow, freezing rain and now rain. It may be so where you are, as well, though you’re a little further south in the hemisphere. How true, how much we only look at the world from our own perspective and if that perspective is clouded by our own life’s experiences, by some mental health disorder or if we’re experiencing bad times in our lives, it is almost more than some can do to think beyond that. Your words and my training with a programme called Telecheck, here in town, for which I’ve been volunteering now for ten years, have brought about more mindful thinking for me. Also, and in all truthfulness, when attacked, my natural instinct first is to grab onto defending myself and this usually is a mark of my inner garbage. It is good to have your reminders…you and your grandson make a beautiful tableau, one to frame and keep.
    SandyP in Southern, Ontario, Canada

  6. Happy times with Griffin! I copied the last few sentences of your message Mary, “but that is changing….”,I am going to print out and put in my office. Remember, (not too long ago) when we all would have stomped back over to the Grinch and set him straight? But we really didn’t -we only caused our peace to diminish thinking our version was correct. Happy, happy 2016!

  7. Poor man had a very dismal perspective to think that about you two and your grandson. I think he was in the business of making people feel bad! I do like the quote by Anais Nin. It can be applied to so many situations!

  8. Mary,
    You seem to be a very reflective person. Getting angry at the person who reprimanded you and your husband is what most would do. However, you chose to consider what motivated his actions and decided you might have reacted in the same way. If only everyone could pause for a moment and think before lashing back. Can you imagine how much more harmonious our lives could be? Peace to you and well wishes for 2016.

  9. Thanks for sharing with us a beautiful picture of your grandson and a great way to see how we can change our negative way of seeing something to the positive. I also think when someone makes a negative or unkind comment that they have my attention to pray for them, that God shows us someone that needs him. But that hurt is sometimes still there in the comment they made. So you have given me the other half of the solution! Thank you ! Also Happy New year!

  10. Oh, how wonderful that the man did not ruin your day with your handsome grandson. The man must have been very unhappy and determined to make everyone feel the same way. I am so happy for you and Jack that you did not let it undermine your wonderful day. Have a Happy, Healthy New Year Mary…you and yours!

Comments are closed.