When I was a little girl, I would run from my shadow. My shadow would always be just one step behind me. If I jumped right, my shadow would jump with me. If I crouched down, my shadow would do likewise. I could never out run, or out wit my shadow. So I would turn the tables and chase the sucker. But instead of being on step behind me, my shadow seemed to be one step ahead of me. I soon found out that I could neither run from or chase my shadow. But if I just sat still, it would sit beside me. When I wasn't chasing or hiding, it was there.
It was just a childish game I would play, but as I grew, I chased and ran from something that, like my shadow I could not catch nor run from. I was alway just one step behind or ahead of it. I ran all the way to Russia trying to hide from it and I swam in the cold waters at the beaches in sunny California trying to catch it. It took me a long time to figure out that happiness could not be caught, nor could you run from it, or hide from it. You have to sit still long enough to see the small and simple things that when you run around are just a fuzzy blur. Things like the sound of my childrens laughter or the look in Chad's eyes when he is trying not to laugh at something I did. It could be the smell of summer on Lauren's skin or the dimples that crease in Evan's chubby hands. It is coming home after a long trip away and the cold of the sheets as you first crawl into bed. Happiness is not measured in dollars and cents, degrees and acalaides, but in love and devotion, smiles and yes, even the tears. For a long time, I didn't love myself enough to let happiness sit down beside me. I wasted years running and hiding, chasing and hunting. Then one day, I looked in the mirror and saw someone looking back at me that, to my surprise, I found out I actually liked. Then I sat down. Pritty soon, Chad came along and sat with me. Not long after that, Lauren and then Evan joined. I love my life, my family, but more importantly, I love myself.