When I was on my morning run today, it occurred to me how much of life is spent waiting for something to get here. Whether that something is:
- A loved one coming for a visit.
- A movie you’ve been waiting to come out on the big screen.
- The good part of a book you’re reading.
- Summer (Winter, Fall, Spring).
- Cleaning to be done.
- The rain to be over (or the thunderstorm to come, for those who enjoy cozying up with a good book and a cup of tea while the thunder cracks, the rain pounds on the roof, and lightning bolts illuminate the sky).
- The wedding day (conference, reunion, anniversary, holiday, etc) to arrive.
- The weekend alone to do whatever your heart desires.
And so on and so on…
While waiting, however, one’s focus is on the event waited for, and so much living is missed during that waiting. All that time up to the moment is lived mindlessly, tasks performed without a second thought, or if thought be given, it’s often rife with anticipation of getting it done so we can get to it.
Days and years go by so quickly, that if we aren’t truly living every moment we’re given, it only results in speeding by even faster. The view outside of the window we’re looking through blurs as we’re focused on what’s not even here. And truly, do we even know it will get here? Tomorrow is not guaranteed, but only the here and now is. What we hold in our hands at this very moment, what we are experiencing right here, right now, is all we really have. Do we want to waste that precious time and experience for what may not come?
“We are always getting ready to live but never living.” -Ralph Waldo Emerson
These thought have crossed my mind before, and I have had good intentions of changing. I tell myself, “from now on I’m going to…”
But then life happens, I fall into the old habitual rut of mindless living, I forget to appreciate the here and now, and I forget to truly live in this moment. Exactly where I am with what I have right now.
I’ve heard it said that it takes two weeks of consistently doing something to make it a habit. What if…
Each morning upon rising, I tell myself that this day, just this one day, I’m going to pay attention to each moment I’m living. I’m going to truly live, just this one day. And what if I do that consistently for two weeks? After all, “One Day at a Time” are not only words of wisdom for maintaining sobriety, but a guide for life in general.
Afterall, in the scheme of things, each event we wait for is only a miniscule of time in our lives, provided we live a full life. If that event in time actually arrives at all. And when I do come to pass, I want to know, and I want others to know, I’ve lived each God-given day to the fullest, experiencing everything possible there is to experience, whether it’s:
- My hands in warm soapy bubbles, washing away any stress as I wash the dishes.
- The feel of a snowflake melting on my eyelashes, or on the tip of my tongue.
- The scent of a fragrant oil, carrying me back to a favorite memory, as scents have a way of doing – it’s free transportation that allows me to live favorite moments more than once through memories.
- The exhilaration of running in the rain or feeling the warmth of the sun caressing my shoulders.
- Appreciating the stillness and beautiful silence of early morning before the rush of traffic and chatter become the majority of the day.
- The satisfaction that being of service can bring, whether that service is keeping a clean house for my family, preparing good, healthy nourishment for them, or making a difference in the life of another, no matter what that looks like.
- Truly feeling the presence of God, hearing His still, small voice, that can only be heard in silence, and in the here and now.
“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future; concentrate the mind on the present moment.” -Buddha
I will begin day one in the morning when my eyes open to see the first light of daybreak. But why wait until then? Right now, right here, I have a book to read, words to write, prayers to say…life to really fully live.
Seize the Day. (Click for an awesome music video.)