My 2012 New Year's Resolution:
To sigh less.
I don't know when my sighing habit started. I rarely realize I'm doing it, and I probably wouldn't have noticed it at all except for the good-natured teasing I get from my husband about it. It may seem like a small thing that isn't worth bothering over, but I've come to realize that there is a lot more to my sighs than breath.
I sigh when I feel hopeless.
I sigh when I think of all the things I didn't get done today.
I sigh when I'm worried about something.
I sigh when I'm thinking negative thoughts about myself.
I sigh when I'm disappointed.
I sigh when I'm letting the kids' behavior drive me nuts.
I sigh when I'm being impatient.
But mostly I sigh when I forget -- forget who I am, forget my calling, forget God's grace, forget my blessings, and forget my unshakeable place in the everlasting kingdom of the One who calls me his Beloved.
This year, instead of sighing I want to learn to breathe.
To inhale God's peace and exhale my gratitude. To inhale remembering myself in Christ, and to exhale his love to the people around me. I want to breathe in the forgiveness and unconditional loving-kindness of God and let go of the lies, distractions, and anxieties that bind me and blind me to his goodness.
[Notice that my resolution is to sigh less. The grace is built right in, to preempt the temptation to heave a big fat ugly sigh over my failure to completely eradicate sighing. I'm onto you, inner perfectionist!]
Tonight at dinner I caught myself beginning to sigh no less than 10 times. Ten times! During one meal! But that's OK. Ten times to reorient and re-purpose my breath. Ten times to remember. Ten times to let the Spirit of God fill me, even as my toddler screamed and my first-grader asked the same question over and over and my preschooler sassed me and my husband tried to tell me about his day but I couldn't hear a word on account of the screaming and pestering and sassing... Breathe.
P.S. The title of this blog is a Mumford & Sons song, which did not particularly inspire my resolution but is share-worthy nonetheless: