Live well, love much and laugh often

Lisa - Ludlow, Kentucky
Entered on February 5, 2009
Age Group: 30 - 50

What do I believe in? If I just skim the top of my mind I can think of many things that I believe in, such as hope, love and God. Just to name a few. However if I dig deeper into my soul, I would say my motto is “live well, love much and laugh often” to me this saying means family.

Let me back up a little and tell you my story, I am Italian and I have six children four girls and two boys, they are all close in age. I got married at nineteen and spent my entire young life being a mother, even though there were and still are rough times, I wouldn’t change a thing. I really believe things happen for a reason therefore it gives me an optimistic outlook when things look bleak. It is funny because when I was a little girl, I use to picture myself living in a big city and having a high profile job, living the life of a business woman. Funny how things turn out. I think back and I’m not even sure how I was even able dream about a lifestyle like that, because my childhood was dreadful. My parents were alcoholics and abusive and I was abandoned at fourteen and lived in several different foster homes. I never really felt what it was like to have a family until I grew up and had my own. I’m pretty sure if I was being psychoanalyzed they would say that is probably why I had so many children., but I say it happened because I didn’t have a family growing up . God blessed me, even though at times I question if it was a more of a punishment!

I can say that all the sleepless nights, the endless worry and constant struggle to make ends meet, is worth it. There is nothing in world like the feeling of your child looking at you with innocent eyes and a pure heart and say I love you. Or smile at you for the first time ever, or put their tiny little hand in yours while you guide them down the street while they hold on tight. Or the first time you take them to daycare and when you come back to pick them up, they come running and grab a hold of you like you’re the only one in the world that matters and you realize that you are. I have a million glimpses that are permently stored in the essential part of my brain. I pull those out from time to time when I’m feeling desperate. They bring a sense of meaning at times when I can’t seem to find one.

My children are getting older and three of them have already moved out and as much as I complained about not having a minute worth of peace. I find that I miss the hectic; I miss the many conversations going on at once. The large dinner table where we all sat down to have dinner together and the sound of laughter loud enough to cause some hearing loss. But it didn’t bother me, because we were together, we all belonged. I think about the time when the house will be empty and the sounds of family will cease. I’m not really sure how I will cope.

Live well, live your life for the small things. Love much; love as much as you can, don’t ever withhold it to prove a point. Laugh often; laugh as much as you can, before it disappears.