Negativity is Contagious

As I was rushing my 10 year old daughter to what would be her last softball game of the season, I dropped some leftover soup off at my in-laws and darted back to the car. This softball game was to secure a ranking at the state tournament so I knew the field would be packed with family, friends and bystanders. With covid (yes, I intentionally decapitilized it the same way I do satan – I refuse to let them have power over me) guidelines release by SIJHSAA, if we couldn’t maintain a 6 feet distance from other families, we would be required to wear a mask through the entire game. Me, being the planner I am, I decided I was going to get there a little early and secure a nice big space for my family with a blanket. To say I was in a rush is a total understatement. I was panicked… and determined.

Before I dashed from my vehicle into my in-laws house, my daughter was visibly struggling with one of her long softball socks. In a hurry, I told her to take it off, breathe and start again the way I had showed her countless times, then I darted into the house. After coming back out to the vehicle and taking off toward the field, I noticed in the rearview mirror that my daughter had tears on her cheeks. Normally, I’m the kind of mom who tells her to brush it off – that this will pass and she won’t even remember it come next week. This time was different. This time, seeing her emotional over a sock really brought the whole situation into perspective.

We’ve had a lot going on in our family over the past 10 months, not to mention all the changes brought on by this darn pandemic. With the hustle and bustle of working in healthcare during such an uncertain time, I realized I hadn’t really taken much time to check in with my daughter and see how she was handling all these changes. We had plenty of chats back in the spring after school had been transitioned to remote, but I really hadn’t pursued an in-depth conversation since school started back onsite in August. Sure, we had the traditional “How was school/softball practice today?” conversations and, of course, our prayer time, but nothing to check in with her emotions and see if she had any questions about all of the changes.

Back in March, we were blessed with a new life in our family making my daughter an aunt at a very young age. June brought a beautiful wedding in which my husband and I gained an amazing son-in-law. But with that union of two becoming one, our household shrunk drastically when my stepdaughter moved out and took the family dog and her cat. All of this on top of the havoc of covid, remote learning and touching restrictions for a sensory proficient and very inquisitive tween.

The revelation I received on the way to the ball field that afternoon has not been easy to digest. In fact, it’s taken me 2 weeks to finish this blog post. My focus has been spread so thin that I have slacked on pouring into the relationships I should hold dearest. That day in the car made me realize my tween daughter has taken the brunt of my intense negativity as I’ve been short-fused while running her to and from games, helping with my in-laws, and trying to keep up with our household chores. I’ve been short tempered and filled with complaint after complaint, but worst of all, I’ve unintentionally hurt those around me and distanced myself from God. I haven’t made time for the Bible study my husband and I started and I’ve been so tired at night that I drift off to sleep before even starting my prayer time. I’m still working through all the thoughts and emotions surfacing with this new found realization but one thing I know without a doubt, is that I need to get back in line with how God intended for me to live this life He blessed me with. There are a few ways I plan to do that but my starting point is to rid my mouth and mind of complaints and negativity. From here on, no more Negative Nancy, no more drama, no more worrying over politics or covid restrictions, no more spreading myself too thin. There’s already so much negativity running rampant in this world, I definitely don’t need to contribute to it. I’m changing my perspective and ultimately changing my output of energy. Positivity starts with me, and it starts today!

In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.
Matthew 5:16 NIV

Join me in making a conscience choice every morning to be positive. Let God’s light of love and positivity shine through you. This dark world sure could use the light.

– Walking in Positivity by Faith & Finding the Blessings, Renee

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