“It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important.” ~~ Arthur Conan Doyle

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(My husband and our dog, Delta)

As I thought about what I wanted to write about this week, I immediately decided that I wanted to focus on the topic of what’s important in life. At this time of year, when the holiday season is about to hit, I think it’s critical to reflect on what’s really important in life. We can get so caught up in buying expensive gifts for the people we love (and even for people we barely know), trying to outdo what we did last year and “one up” ourselves, that we forget what it’s all about. It’s not about how much something costs or how big it is. It’s about the thought behind it, the sentiment. Sometimes, the best gifts of all cost absolutely nothing in terms of dollars, but they are worth more than anything in terms of the feelings and love that went into it.

So as I sat down to write this post, I kept getting interrupted. First by my youngest daughter, wanting to know if we could watch a family show together and just spend some time together. She wanted to tell me about her day — what had happened at school, what she did when she got home from school. That took us up to 7:30 p.m., and I started fretting about having time to write this. Then, I sat down again, and my old hound dog (Beta, who is almost 14 years old) jumped on the couch and started loving on me, wanting to get a good rub down and some good old fashioned cuddling — it’s cold outside tonight, and she wanted to be right up on me, getting nice and toasty. That lasted until about 8:15 p.m. Again, I started to fret.

But then, as I thought about it, I was doing exactly what I wanted to be writing about — focusing on what is important. And to me, what’s most important is spending time with my family — humans and canines, alike. I immediately wanted to include the picture above in this post. It’s my husband and our chocolate lab, Delta, who passed away this past July. This picture makes me cry every time I look at it. Not because it makes me sad, but because it captures so beautifully how important she and my husband were to each other. The love between the two of them simply jumps out of the photo at you, don’t you think?

This is the kind of love I have for my family. I know I have my days where they probably question my love. Those days when I am grumpy and take it out on them for no good reason. But I hope, more than anything, that they know how important they are to me. They are my world, and my life would be nothing without my husband, my daughters, my dogs, my parents, and the rest of my family. They love me, unconditionally. Just the way that I love them.

So at this time of year, as the holidays are about to hit, I try to remember that it’s the little things that matter the most. Spending quality time together, listening as someone recounts their day to me, offering words of encouragement when called for, rubbing a belly (for my canines, of course!).

What’s important to you? What are the things that matter the most? These are the things that define who you are. It’s what people will remember about you, what you will leave behind. It’s never too late to redefine your legacy. Use this time of year to take stock of who you are and to figure out what’s really important to you. Let go of everything else. Everything that does not serve you in a way that will help you be the person you want to be is waste. Make room for the important things, for these are the things that make your life rich.

Namaste,

Melanie

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