I’ve been thinking about impermanence a lot lately. Yes, this is really what I think about. Some of you watch tv, I contemplate life, whateves… This year, I’ve found peace in accepting that Life is a series of moments, interconnected in ways that are difficult to imagine. There are times it seems like I am completely alone with what I’m experiencing. Then, I get smacked upside the head with a little ‘forget-me-not’ experience from the Universe saying…’Hey, you. Yeah, you. You’re not the only person going through this.’
I know now we are all part of something so much bigger than any one of us could ever accomplish alone and with our own agendas. I see so many people who are wrapped up in ‘what if’ and so worried about what will happen next, in fear of the judgment of others, fear of failing, fear of being alone. So consumed by what is to be or what was, that being present and in the moment isn’t even something they understand. I struggle with it all the time, but I can feel when I’m living as if only the moment exists and when I’m not present.
At work, I am not in the moment. I am looking ahead, planning, strategizing, trying to catch up and trying to be ahead of my workload…trying to be in control. If I were to be in the moment, I would not have the sense of urgency that makes me effective at doing my job. During the grind of the school year I struggle to be in the moment. There’s always a competition between slowing down and being mindful and being to work on time, picking up my child at a time that does not cause guilt, completing homework, getting through a morning and night time routine and having structure that a child ‘needs’. There’s not much bliss going on…not many smiles and contentment as I’m passing out exhausted and empty.
Bliss comes at the moment that I stop. I stop to see a beautiful flower and soak it in. I stop to hold my daughter as she falls asleep in my arms, to feel her breathing and her life. It comes when I feel safe and loved and understood and vulnerable. It’s the moment when something happens that reminds me that I’m not in control. It’s the second that I ask for help and I receive…not the seconds before that are filled with anxiety wondering if the person really cares enough to lend a hand. Not the years before that taught me that people can’t be trusted; but the fleeting second, when I believe they can.
Impermanence is all around us. The snow falls, we build a snowman, the sun comes, the snowman ceases to exist. One day someone is full of life, and the next, they are gone…their name written in a newspaper to be forgotten by most. A week later, their life is nothing more than a memory…they’re deleted as if they never existed. One day, we’re falling in love with someone, lying in their arms and a few weeks later, we realize it wasn’t meant to be and we never see one another again.
This doesn’t bother me anymore because I accept that only the moment exists. I struggle to live this way, but knowing it exists has changed me…there’s really no going back. I know that being present and mindful brings such clarity and happiness. It brings Life.
This week, in the crazy of Christmas, I’m focusing on Living As If Only the Moment Exists. Taking time to reset my stress levels and remembering what is really important. For me, it will be conciously slowing down. It will be going to church, praying, meditating, connecting with friends, watching the joy in my child’s eyes as she opens gifts…and recognizing that she’s just being a kiddo when she chucks them to the side and wants to go shopping for more gifts. It will be stopping to feel the moments of sadness when she leaves for her father’s house on Christmas day. The gift of being present is knowing that I’m human and sometimes moments hurt; it’s also knowing that all moments pass.
((hugs)) and Merry Christmas!