I finally got round to watching The Greatest Showman this week. We’ve been listening to the soundtrack for a while but putting the songs to the story brought their key message home to me.
In particular, these lines from the The Greatest Show, which bookends the film, really struck a chord.
It’s everything you ever want
It’s everything you ever need
And it’s here right in front of you
This is where you wanna be
In the film’s narrative, this relates to PT Barnum’s final realisation that his pursuit of fame and fortune has come at the cost of his family.
If we’re being honest with ourselves, it’s something I’m sure many of us can empathise with. How often do we get caught up in worrying about jobs, money and keeping up with the proverbial Joneses? How often do we fret about all the things in our lives that aren’t quite right? Our own physical imperfections or personality flaws? Or a million and one other things that stop us just enjoying the here and now?
I’m certainly prone to all of the above at times. And I know I’m not the only one. (He says, veering off into Sam Smith territory.)
Sometimes the best way to appreciate what you already have is to take it away for a while. That was the case this week when Kara went to stay with her grandparents for a few days.
Our daughter may be the smallest member of the household but she also leaves behind the biggest hole when she isn’t here. She fills the house with her mile-a-minute chatter, her laughter and, yes, her diva strops. Kara is relentless; she never stops. There are times when I crave just a few moments’ peace and quiet. And then, when it actually happens, all I want is to hear her rampaging through the house again.
With Kara away, our house is a calmer, quieter place this morning.
I don’t like it 🙁
— Tim | ThatchamDad (@thatchamdad) May 29, 2018
It’s so easy to focus on the negative and ignore the positive, isn’t it?
So yesterday I found myself counting down the hours until setting off to pick Kara up from London. And that meant an uninterrupted hour in the car with her on the way home. We spent the entire time chatting about what she had been up to and singing along to our two favourite soundtracks of the moment – The Greatest Showman and Hamilton. No TV, no social media notifications, no distractions: just daddy, daughter and a lot of uninhibited singing.
It was a perfect little bubble of time that reminded me to surf the crest of the wave rather than drown myself in a sea of fears and regrets. I took this photo of her as we pulled up on to our driveway, just to capture the moment. Small but significant – and oh so perfect.
Sure, there are always things in life that could be better. And yet everything I could ever want and need is already here right in front of me. I am where I want to be. I just need to remember to be present and not overlook them.