A few weeks ago I posted about the struggle I have in finding time to ride. Readers had some great ideas about how to find the time -- one of the best was that I need to put it on my calendar and make it a priority. If the time was set aside and marked as riding, the rest of the calendar appointments would find time around the riding appointment. For a few weeks it has been working fairly well. I have been able to ride for the most part at least twice a week.
This is a major accomplishment for someone with a full time job, three kids with their own commitments, various volunteer commitments and the struggle of finding daylight in late winter.
But sometimes you just have to stop and put aside not just the riding but all the other commitments in your life for what is really important. For me that is my family and today it was more obvious than ever how important that was and how riding and everything else needs to take a back seat.
My father in law passed away this morning and everything else just stopped. Spending time with my husband and my family was most important and everything else just didn't matter. Work appointments and any other plans I had for the day that seemed so important yesterday just weren't important anymore.
My father in law was a man who always put his family first. Nothing made him happier than spending time with his family and they always were first in his list of priorities. He coached each of his kid's baseball teams, mentored many other children, and umpired baseball long past the time when his body was telling him that he needed to quit and rest. When my middle son was a baby, we were living with him and I can hardly remember ever putting my son to bed because Paw Paw loved to snuggle with him in the evening until they both passed out. Even in his last days when he struggled to find the strength to talk, images of his grandchildren brought life back to his eyes. Family was always first for him.
The best gift he ever gave me was raising a son who is a wonderful husband to me and a giving father to my children. For that I will always be grateful. Thanks Paw Paw.
So priorities... sure my horses are important to me and I love to ride and I will continue to try to make them a priority. But on a day like today... it reminds me of what the real priorities will and always be... and how blessed I am to have such a great family.