April Jeppson: It’s good to be surrounded by amazing people

Published 8:45 pm Friday, November 24, 2023

Every Little Thing by April Jeppson

As I look over some of my articles from the last year or so, there appears to be a trend of me saying I need to slow down and just relax, and then not quite getting there. I have good intentions, and I’ll make an appointment to get my nails done, or enjoy a lunch date with a friend, but the level of relaxation I needed was much greater than what an hour could provide.

April Jeppson

I’m still on a gratitude kick, which is fitting since we just celebrated our national holiday of giving thanks. I’m currently up north at my parents’ house donning an oversized hoodie, pajama pants and curled up on the couch near the fireplace. Over the years my parents have made updates and redecorated. It feels cozier than I remember growing up. I’m not sure if this is due to the location of the new couch, or because coming home is just so good for my soul.

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Having Thanksgiving at my uncle’s place this week was truly a blessing. He hosted 17 of us in his beautiful home overlooking the lake. As he was finishing up the meal prep, I took note of the giant pot he was using on the stove. Was he making soup? As I approached him, I realized he was simply making a lot of gravy. I’m not sure why that moment brought me so much joy, but it felt like a hug. These are my people, and I am home.

This morning I had an “oh shoot I forgot” moment and messaged a co-worker. I apologized for reminding her so late but was hoping she still had time to take care of the request. She texted within minutes letting me know that she had handled it an hour ago with a reassuring, “I’ve got your back” response. Such a small situation, and yet it felt again, like a comforting hug.

It’s not always easy to get away and decompress, especially if when you’re away, you are worried about what’s happening back on the home front. This helps me understand part of the reason why I was never fully able to relax when I had some time off to do so. I’m not nervously checking my phone or having regrets about being so far away. Now that I’m surrounded by such amazing people at work, I can see and feel the difference it makes.

I’m looking forward to these next few days with my family. We don’t have much planned, but we don’t need to. Being in the company of those I love is enough. Whether we are playing cards or preparing dinner together, I’m satisfied. I did acquire some leftover gravy, however, so if I’m being honest, I do hope I can enjoy some more of that before I leave.

Albert Lean April Jeppson is a wife, mom, coach and encourager of dreams. Her column appears every Saturday.