Alexis Albright Meschi
The Miracle Happening at My Table
Every night, we eat dinner together as a family. I give everyone a 10 minute warning. Then a 5. Then I call them. And I set. And I wait. And I yell. Then I yell again.
Then they come.
Every. Single. Night.
We bless our food as a family then we start on the meal. I serve everyone the main course. Usually a meat- roasted chicken with a seasonal fruit. Italian sausage and potatoes. Chicken marsala meatballs.
They each grab their own serving of the side dish- roasted seasonal vegetables, sometimes a pasta, tomatoes and basil.
Then they finish with the salad.
And we talk. We share the best part of our day. We talk about the news and what's going on in the world. We tell what happened on our daily activates. My husband usually tries to get the girls to guess what he got for lunch that day. We argue. The girls bicker and sometimes push one another. Then we end the meal in a family prayer.
And because we do this every night, and my family did it ever night, and my grandparents did it with my parents every night as did my husbands, it just feels normal. It doesn't feel sacred or special.
When I imagined being in Italy with my family, I imagined sitting at a beautiful outdoor table. The table had a tablecloth with seasonal dishes and each person that I love is sitting around me. And maybe there were new friends and we'd look out over the landscape and I'd feel the happiest I've ever felt. Good food. My family. New friends. Satiated in peace and utter, simple joy.
Why have I refused to acknowledge that my mundane daily dinners already have given me the opportunity to experience peace and joy?
What I want, I already have.
So far, that is the single most simply powerful thing that #italyhereandnow has illuminated. Everything that I've envisioned would be a sacred and extraordinarily special in Italy, I have her and now.
I've spent a lot of time waiting for things.
I wait until I've completed a book before I start another. I wait until my girls are older to say I'll enjoy parenting. I wait for a hardship to pass to say I'll feel peaceful. I wait until I'm at a certain place in my business before I take time off. I wait to go to Italy to have a profound experience.
I'm done with the waiting that's an excuse for not living.
I choose to enjoy the now.