There is a song on the new George Strait album, "Twang", that simply strikes a chord deep within me. The lyrics go like this:
"It's not the breaths you take, the breathing in and out, that gets you through the day, ain't what it's all about. You might just miss the point trying to win the race. It's not the breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away."
My life has been full of moments that took my breath away - both good and bad. As is the case for most people, many of those moments passed without my noticing them until they were behind me. But, looking back, some of them stand out in bold contrast and can truly be described as pivotal moments in my life. For example:
* The first time I held each of my newborn children in my arms, my heart expanding with a mother's love and the undeniable awareness that I was responsible for the care and nurturing of this new little person.
* The moment I realized my first marriage was at its end. A long and formative chapter in my life was over, but a whole new chapter was waiting to unfold.
* The first time Ed took me in his arms and led me around the dance floor in a two-step - I found my "dancin' feet" and realized that having fun was a good thing.
* Sitting in front of a roaring fire in the backroom at Perini's when Ed pulled out a ring box and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him. Although we had talked about getting married and even gone so far as to look at rings, his formal proposal will always stand out in my mind as one of the most romantic moments ever.
* Driving away from Lubbock on August 1, 2009, after moving Ben there to attend Tech. Both he and Sam stood in the front yard, waving goodbye as I pulled away, and the realization struck me that my babies were grown. The tears started to fall and didn't stop until nearly Plainview.
* Walking away from the office for the final time from a job that literally made me physically sick for five years. What a feeling of relief and euphoria to have that part of my life behind me. It was like a sack of bricks had been lifted from my shoulders and the opportunities ahead were limitless.
All of us have moments that change our lives. Sometimes they are not "big" moments, but quiet moments that steal up on us and ultimately define who we are. I know that I am thankful for each of these moments and where they have brought me. Who I am is the result of those moments that have "taken my breath away."
What moments have changed your life?