It was not in her plans for the day. As she made her way through the quaint Salina downtown doing errands with her friend, she never once planned to be in a parade. Antique cars were gathering, getting ready to take their place, eager to be featured as they drove down Santa Fe Avenue to the delight of car enthusiasts and history buffs. My friend, who had originally found a place to park and watch along with all the others, all of sudden had a wonderful idea! She turned to her friend with a glimmer in her eye and suggested that they join in the parade. She knew that her husband was going to be there watching. She told her friend to watch for his reaction as they drove by. After all, she wanted to concentrate on her driving, not daring to get too close to one of those beautiful vintage cars. She pulled her Honda Civic out of their parking space and followed an antique car in front of her. Before she knew it, she was in the parade!
I laughed as I listened to her story. Carolyn is a warm-hearted, God-loving, rule-following friend with a wonderful sense of humor. She has a gift for hospitality and blessing people with food that is surpassed by few others. She and her friend that was with her are both in their late 60’s. As Carolyn relayed the story, she said when all was said and done, and their laughter had subsided, her friend turned to her and said, “I needed that!”
Spontaneity and laughter can add such life to our days. We grow accustomed to our schedules and our responsibilities and even our ‘plans’ for fun. Carolyn even asked her friend, “Do you need a permit to be in a parade?” but quickly answered her own question by giving herself permission to join in.
No police pulled her out of the parade. In fact, she told me a motorcycle policeman drove right by her and didn’t say or do anything. She was imagining that he felt sorry for that poor woman who accidentally found herself in a parade. In fact, her husband did ask, “You did that on purpose?” He laughed along with her after the initial shock of seeing a Honda Civic – no wait HIS Honda Civic in an antique car parade.
So what is it that you need to give yourself permission to do? It may be to sit and relax, to take a day off, to change your mind, or to make a bold move. You may need to give yourself permission to feel, to cry, to grieve or to ask God the tough questions. Whatever it may be, it seems the outcome would be the same… a richer, fuller, life with more stories and fewer regrets.
Granting Myself Permission With You,