For the past few months, I’ve felt like most people I know; living life at pace that is well…completely ridiculous. If I am really honest.. it’s not even months but years… decades.
Yes, it is a full, wonderful life. One that I am grateful for. But one that needs to slow way down in order to learn, reflect, and be able to stay in the now. There are thousands of articles, blogs, pretty little pictures on social media that talk about the importance of this. I see them, nod my head in agreement and then rush off to the next thing and the next not having absorbed any of the message… not having any self awareness of the ridiculous way I am living.
Tomorrow I will start writing again even though I love it and have so many ideas in my head. Tomorrow I will spend 5 hours painting even though my hands and heart are itching to get lost in color. Tomorrow I will purge all of the crap in my basement for simpler living even though I can’t think clearly with all that meaningless stuff around me. Tomorrow I will get to the gym even though my body is telling me to stretch and become strong. Tomorrow I will call my friend even though I know the sound of her voice saying hello will fill my soul. Tomorrow… tomorrow.. tomorrow.
Well, once again, it has become all too real that there is no guarantee of tomorrow. On my birthday last week, our sweet friend Ben, the son of our dear friends from Colorado Springs, had a massive seizure followed by brain surgery and he never recovered. He was suddenly gone with no more tomorrows. Ben had been born with Spina bifida yet lived a life full of learning, adventures with friends and family and really had the biggest heart. We were fortunate enough to go say goodbye to Ben while his body was being prepared for organ transplants. It was an honor to be with his family who loved him so completely.
Yesterday, the five of us went to his service. It was lovely and of course so very sad. It was the first funeral that they boys attended. It was hard but beautiful. We sat in the pew holding their hands, wiping away tears and giving them shoulders to lean into. At the end of the service, as the last music played, my 6 year old just lost it. He looked at me and said “this is so sad” and then sobbed. My tears couldn’t stop. I held him while he cried. It felt like his first real life cry; one that wasn’t from scratches or bumps, or being mad at an older brother over legos, or from being hungry or tired. It was a cry that came from a broken heart. It was a cry that showed me he is understanding that life is hard and complicated. It was a tremendous moment for me as his mother that he could share with me like that. It was a gift that I will never forget.
It is completely ridiculous that it often takes moments in time like this to bring me back to pure intention, true awareness and clear perspective. I can hold onto or rather find these places when I paint. But I lose them in the daily grind. How does one stay in that space. Constant gratitude? Humility? How does one let go of all that doesn’t really matter?
First of all, I am going to start by slowing down. I need a constant reminder… perhaps I should tie weights to my shoes? put on rose colored glasses? What do you think? I’d love some thoughts on how to turn completely ridiculous into completely … well how about….. somewhat balanced?
I’m off to paint… that I know will be a good start and I’m not waiting for tomorrow!