I love social media and my phone as much as the next red-blooded American, but if you’re not watching what’s happening in front of you sometimes, you miss it. You don’t even know that you missed it. But you did.
Sometimes, you have to carve out time for yourself so that you don’t miss seeing and feeling things. It’s that simple. Sometimes you have to take time back from the world that wants so badly to take it away from you. There’s always something, all the time, some robber baron sucking your time away. You give and give; to your job, your family, your hobbies and interests, your volunteer work, your friends, your friends’ projects. There’s all the time suck of bills – paying them, calling to argue about them, waiting on hold to discuss them. There are all the chores and to-do list items sucking your time. Clean this, fix that, buy these things, take these other things to this place, pick up things from another place. Sometimes, you have to take back a chunk of your time, and pay attention to that chunk. It’s important.
I carved a bit of that out for myself today. The earth didn’t stop spinning because I didn’t cook something or take that thing back to the store or pay a bill or get that stuff out of my trunk or wash those things or pick up other things from somewhere else.
Today, for only about an hour or so, I took a walk with a person I love. This simple thing was the best thing all week.
It was freakishly warm for this time of year, in the high 50s. We talked about things we saw. We saw a lot of deer, and I mean a LOT. So tame they walk right up to you in case you have something to eat. A brace of ducks gobbling up corn from a wild-looking elderly couple, who engaged us in conversation. The man talked about steel, and I was able to talk about that with him, as I come from what was once a steel town. The woman mentioned twin granddaughters graduating from college, and a son-in-law who “is a driver” on the west coast. I can really talk about that now, so I asked her if he was an owner-operator and she said no but blah blah story, and in the end, what he asked for was a new tractor, and we laughed about that and talked about all the conveniences in the modern tractors.
We saw a couple that “looked” foreign. They were dark complected and the woman wore a headscarf. I went out of my way to smile and say hello. They were distant and in a hurry and I wondered about their lives these days.
I saw a lot of gorgeous trees, which made my soul feel settled and grounded, and this amazing, wonderful tree which had a big opening in it. When I approached it to get a picture of the opening, I started to walk around it, and suddenly the hole that punched through it revealed itself to me to have formed itself naturally into the shape of a long, stretched-out looking heart. Kind of like mine, I guess. It’s been stretched out, shrunk, expanded and contracted more than a contestant’s skin on a weight loss challenge show. And yet it’s still there, with the light shining around and through it, beating on and on.
It reset my soul and gave me perspective.
You need to see what’s around you, in front of you. You might not be seeing it. Look again. Look harder.