|My friend has this sign above her kitchen sink. What a great daily reminder to enjoy each moment.|
Since the beginning of the year I’ve been to three wakes and know of a few other acquaintances who have passed away. Some were sick and elderly, some sick but not elderly and some not sick and not elderly. Some of the deaths were a relief to their loved ones that they were no longer in pain while others were sudden and unexpected. There are feelings of loss and sadness but hopefully there are also many joyful memories and a story or two that conjures a smile or a laugh in the retelling. I don’t think I’m alone when hearing of someone’s death gives me pause, has me look at my life and question its quality. Am I living in each moment, savoring and enjoying them? Am I finding joy in each day even though there are responsibilities I need to meet? Can I strike a balance between working, paying the bills, giving back to my community and pursuing my dreams. I know it’s not black and white but sometimes I have a hard time living in the gray.
|Dinner out with Bill a couple of weekends ago|
Everyday I want to be awake, open, receptive. I want to see, hear, experience. I want to eat at a favorite restaurant or discover a new one, cook a favorite meal from memory or try a new recipe. I want to read and go wherever the characters in the book are going or sit quietly for a few minutes without distractions. I want to enjoy the work day and the hours before and after as well as all the hours of the weekends. I want to stay in each moment. I also want to make plans; meet friends and family, visit other cities, states, countries, save money for emergencies and the future. It’s the same conflict I have with myself time and again. Am I living, being, doing? Am I quiet and contemplative? Am I too caught up in work, commitments, deadlines? Am I spending too much time daydreaming? How can I find balance and be satisfied that the scale hasn’t tipped too heavily to one side. I’ve learned, sometimes the hard way, over the years that relationships don’t usually fizzle out or prosper because of any one individual act but rather from the whole arc of it. Likewise, I think, with life. My life isn’t disappointing or fulfilled because of one specific job, one specific trip, one specific experience but rather from the sum of all of these things.
|Hiking the Virgin River in Zion National Park.|
These are some of the things I think about. I’m not pulled under by the weight of them, know there are times I will move through a task without being present and also know I can always stop and notice where my feet are. This is my daily challenge.