I read an article in the UUWorld magazine yesterday (which I am unable to access on the net) about creating moments. The article was written by Mary Pipher (Reviving Ophelia) about how to be present in our own lives. Pipher expressed that we all have the opportunity to have those moments – which are often bound up with our children, our pets, and nature. She discussed having happiness contests with a close friend, in which they challenge each other to find happiness moments during their day. Cooking a delicious soup, planting and truly feeling the dirt, watching the snow fall with a crackling fire beside you. I have thought much about this since reading the article.
This morning, while walking and doing a minimal amount of running at Furman University (gorgeous campus), I made myself remember that to have those moments, I must be present in my own life. I looked into the trees, some of which are getting a tiny touch of fall, and paid attention to the colors. I watched a black swan in the lake dip his head into the water, and bathe himself in the early morning light. I examined the faces of several students as they passed by, deep in thought about something in their lives. I watched a squirrel carrying a hunk of bread to the bushes, and squat over to munch his find.
How present are you in your life? Do you see the hummingbirds at the window? Do you admire or study the pink sky as the sun slides into the west? This a great challenge to me because I have SO MANY things to do. But I want to be present in my life.
I am attempting to un-learn multi-tasking. If I’m talking to someone, I truly force myself to be there with that person. If I’m in the grocery, I try to look at the redness of the tomato and notice the thickness of its skin. I try. I will have to keep trying because remembering to have those moments and to be present does not come easy to me. I’m a busy busy person, and the thoughts careen most days. But I’m trying, and I will keep on. I want to be present today.