Sunday, February 19, 2012

Don't Focus On The Flies

I detest flies and their kin.   How about you?

I can't stand to have them in my home. Spotting a single fly will drive me from any comfortable chair, away from any guest I have, into the kitchen for my fly-swatter, and off onto an extended and single-minded foray.

I have a good life. My God has blessed me with much more than I deserve. I have a good home, a wonderful husband, three beautiful children and an outstanding son-in-law. I have good health, good friends, food to eat, clothes to wear and a car to drive. I am warm when it is cold and comfortable when it is hot.

But if a fly enters my domain - I become miserable! I am angry and on a mission: I must destroy! Why?

Is it Fear? No. Odds are against the fly doing me physical damage by putting his dirty little appendages on anything I'm going to ingest. I couldn't tell you the number of flies I've had the displeasure of meeting in my fifty years. Of those, several didn't make it - though not NEARLY enough -- but I'm still here. It's not fear that sends me after a fly-swatter.

Is it Curiosity? No. We dissected flies in High School. I got up close and personal then and I'm over that.

So what motivates me?

It's simple - the fly BUGS me! He takes my eyes off my blessings. A fourth-of-an-inch-long bug enters my house and does a better trick than David Copperfield...He makes my house DISAPPEAR! My party guests VANISH! And for just a little while he is the center of my focus. I forget every good and perfect thing because all I can see is FLY !

A corollary to this happens in my life:

1.) I get up in the morning feeling a little achy:

a. I can take a couple of pain relievers, and do a few stretches to try to get rid of the ache right away, or

b. I can stretch the pain out all day, knowing that nothing will look right and nothing will go right when all I can see is this particular 'fly'.

2.) While waiting to check out in the 20 items or less line, I realize that someone in front of me has 24 items!

a. I can say with a shrug, "Oh well... C'est la vie"! or

b. I can make a scene and call a manager.

3.) I attend a Professional baseball game. A long, hard , driving ball comes right down the third base line and into the stands where I'm sitting. Homerun! Everyone starts to scrabble, but the ball Plops neatly into MY glove. Wow. Before I can even turn and show my friends, the man to my left elbows me, jostling the ball out of my glove, on purpose. Now it's HIS ball. Do I:

a. Scream for back up, 'cause it's ON! or

b. Shrug and think, 'what a poor, sad fellow' (and hope someone pours beer down his back when we all sit back down.)

I'm not saying how I did on this exam, but the question is: Do I focus on the flies or on my Life?

Let me give you one more example.

This morning I took my youngest child to school. On my return route, I was following a brand new 2012 Lincoln, when suddenly, a moth appeared between me and the steering wheel. (Not a snake, not a thief, not a murderer: a moth.)

Though I am not afraid of moths - in my mental filing cabinet, they are classified with flies. And I instantly began trying to shoo it out the window. It was only by luck that I noticed the cars up ahead had come to an abrupt stop, because I was focused on the 'fly'. An accident was avoided, but it could have easily been otherwise. (Don't tell my hubby.)

There are so many beautiful things in this world, so many wonderful conversations, and so many tasks we can undertake and complete, if we won't allow ourselves to focus on the blemishes of this world.

I know I'll always want to get rid of the flies, but my goal is to keep them in perspective. I have a wonderful life. Hopefully the flies won't make me forget that.

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