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Thinking More About Family

by Tom Johnson on Jul 25, 2011 •
categories: family

When I think about my past, the only thing that matters -- or at least so it seems -- is family. Looking at old pictures of the kids, how they have changed. How Shannon and I have changed too. It puts life in perspective. I need to prioritize my life so that, going forward, I do things that have the most value. It almost sounds cliche to write it, but when I think of the past, all that seems to matter is family, family, family. Everything else is secondary.

Lately I've gotten into a habit of watching tv at night, when I'm too tired to do anything else. The problem is that I end up staying up much later than I normally would. The next day, I'm sluggishly tired.

I asked Avery for advice. She recommended that I read a book I like at night instead of watching tv. The way Avery reads is really amazing -- she has a voracious appetite for books. I decided to try out her advice the other night. Instead of watching a stupid espionage movie, I started reading some stories in Dispensation, a book Shannon gave to me for Christmas. I read a story by Brian Evanston, and then one by Brady Udall. I didn't finish Udall's "Buckeye the Elder" that night, but I kept thinking about it at church the next day. As soon as I came home I finished it. It works.

I like asking Avery for advice. The kid has some genuine insight into things. It's quite amazing, actually. I really like my children. They have a kind of wisdom that cuts through the unnecessary complications that I have come to see life with. I like confiding with Avery about the issues I face, and then asking for her thoughts.

Life is too short to spend it watching tv. I think I will try an experiment. We will go on three fun adventures a week. If the kids don't want to go, we just change the adventure until everyone does want to go. Also, I will stop watching tv. Baby steps. I know there is so much more, but just giving my time seems to be the most important element.

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