Last night as I was checking on the boys, something my mom used to say popped into my head. I don't know why, it just did.
When we were being particularly demanding, messy, or just selfish, she used to say, "The world does not revolve around you, you know!" Of course we either didn't know or we didn't care!
I don't know why that popped into my head when I was checking on my kids. My first thought was, "well it may not revolve around me anymore, but my life revolves around these kids."
As a mother of young kids, so much of what I do is for them. As they get older, the less they need me, but I'm still their mom. Everything I do affects them. Yes, I am "more than a mom," but being a MOM is so BIG! It's so much responsibility! It's my number one job at the moment.
So, does the world revolve around the kids? Would that make my mom wrong? Surely, that's not right.
I must be missing something because Mom is never wrong!
I then started thinking of Jamie Lee's post When Nice Gets Tough and how this related to the world not revolving around any particular individual. About how if we Pay it forward the world may somehow become a nicer place.
Then, I started thinking about how our lives all intertwine and the affect we have on each other. It's amazing to think that a chance encounter with someone may change their life. A butterfly effect of sorts.
Do we really ever know the affect our lives and interactions have on another person?
There is a man that lives around the corner from me. I don't know his name. I call him "The Nicest Man in the Neighborhood." He has two Lhasa Apso's that he walks around the neighborhood and every time I see him, he smiles and waves. It puts me in a good mood for the longest time when I see him. Just this nice man, out walking his dogs with a wave and smile for everyone he sees.
Or when I run into someone crabby, it puts me in a bad mood. I have to work extra hard to find my "happy place."
It's easy to see the effect we have on our kids' or spouses' lives and the affect they've had on ours. Even close friends. But what about the "chance encounters?" The person at the grocery store who you let go ahead of you in the grocery line? The car you let merge in front of you? Or the smile you gave to the postal worker?
I came to the conclusion that the world, in fact, does NOT revolve around me (phew, Mom was right after all!), but the world is affected by me.
How I choose to interact with the world, affects it. One encounter at a time.