This morning, I forced the little one to ride with me down the Greenway. I enjoyed the almost crisp fall-is-on-its-way morning bike ride listening to Ms. AnnaB name every part of the Greenway after some area of the Island of Sodor. We hit the park on the way back and after a few minutes a gentleman (grandfather) and his grand-daughter strolled up to play too. I sat and began to talk with the man and found out that his kids were military and he convinced them to do grad-school at UTK so he and his wife could help watch the little ones. Long story short, he said his life has been blessed and enriched beyond measure by being able to do this for his kids and spent his retirement years surrounded by his grands. He made my wheels start spinning.
I spent most of 2011 wanting to go back to work. Part of the reason is financial, part is me wanting to just work, and part is wanting to prep her for the world of school. My wife keeps telling me that I'll never look back on this time and wish I had spent it different...and she's right. I've done some jobs and thought, "Wow, what was I thinking?", but not this one. I have the rest of my life to work. Now that doesn't mean that I don't want to go back to work, I just don't want to "sell my soul" for something that is not fulfilling.
Thinking back on 2011 I also started thinking about the people I met within the past year. I'm one of those "loner" friends (also read as bad friend). This past weekend was the first time in 10 plus years that I had seen one of my very best friends from high-school...which was AWESOME by the way. So I was re-acquainted with thankfulness for friends. I would like to take a moment to publicly thank the people I met in Richmond, VA late 2010 to early 2012. These friends were those who I knew for a few months, but came over on a triple digit heat day to load our belongings in a moving truck. These friends were the one's who splurged on pizza for us instead of me splurging. These friends selflessly moved heavy objects knowing that since we were moving to a different state, I couldn't repay the favor. Thank you. And that is a "thank you" that is two months overdue.
As I sit on my couch, watching Sid the Science Kid, and being fed raw carrots by a three year old; I want to be thankful for friends old and new, thankful for the fact that my wife has tirelessly carved a place for me to stay at home with the little bit, and try to remain thankful that when I don't get an interview/callback-that our family is being protected from something beyond my knowledge.
In the end, whether I've desperately searched for a job, or enjoyed time to nap daily and improve my culinary skills, I wouldn't change the time spent. To be cliche today, Time is Love and I wouldn't have changed the time spent the past few years.