I started to write this post 3 days ago. I wanted to write about being in the present moment and taking in every breath, every sound, every sight, and treasuring it dearly. Right now in this very moment is the gift, not what could happen tomorrow or the days gone past.
I thought I had the words all figured out and then on New Year’s Eve, I saw a tweet that, Mike (Beard Guy) Taylor, from the band, Walk Off The Earth, had just died in his sleep. Never to say good bye to anyone ever again. That’s it. It’s done. Just like that, this human body checked out. Never for anyone to ever see him alive again. No more words, no more laughs, no more touches, no more hugs.
Do you ever have moments that come up in your life and it sideswipes you to pay attention to what just happened? This happens to me a lot.
I didn’t know Mike Taylor personally. I know the band, Walk Off the Earth,…yet, for some reason, with Mike Taylor’s passing, it simply made me bear witness to the fragility of life. It made me reflect on me and how I have been working on focusing to try to stay more mindful in the presence of my life and that I have sucked miserably at it. It made me instantly evaluate how I am living and if I am being true to myself and living honestly and authentically TO ME in the present moment. I have to admit that it is very hard. It is….It is really hard. It is so easy for us to say the word mindfulness and toss it around like we know what we are really talking about and “being in the moment” is where it’s at. But what does it really mean? How do we stop and appreciate the very notion that NOW, right now, in this very moment, is all we have.
Today, I want infuse my precious moments of living within me. To step into living my life. To open up my mind’s eye and absorb every aspect of these moments. I realize how I have missed many times to pause and fully experience everything around me and within me due to living a life on rapid-fire and allowing my life to be hijacked by others. The moments I have missed include sharing gratitude for each incredible blissful moment to simply be alive. From feeling the wind on my face when hiking in the woods and listening to the chirping of the grasshoppers, to mindfully washing out my bathtub that I just used (as it was filled with messy seaweed that happily moisturize my skin), to standing in line at a store with a crying baby in front of me and I can (compassionately) marvel at the intensity of his voice….It all counts. I want to experience the presence of the ones who are our tribe, my sweet friends, our family, the inner circle who have graced me with their presence and love. This is what I want. I want to bear witness to me waking up and to fully understand that our humanness is not guaranteed. We don’t know what is to come tomorrow, let alone 30 seconds from now.
Our lives have been constructed (and also deconstructed) by the outside world to move fast, to keep up with each other and to always be obsessed and addicted to see what each of us are up to. We have forgotten who WE are. We are searching for validation (of who we are) online, and sacrificing are very own self-worth. (Don’t you know that THEIR life must be more important than our very own…Right?! I mean, why else do we spend on average about 2-3 hours a day on Instagram alone…scrolling and scrolling to see what is going on in their world). How tragic we don’t spend that time in our own life. Can you imagine for a moment if we took that ‘Instagram time’ and infused it into our own magic by maybe even, heaven forbid, reading a book! Imagine if we decided to wake up and immerse our minds into nurturing and growing our souls. I can only begin to feel the magnificence of how profound we would all become.
Being distracted by social media is not living mindfully, nor is it really joyful. This is looking to find our souls in someone else’s feed. We spend hours caught up in the scrolling matrix and inbox mayhem desperately looking for a connection. Think about this fact for a second, that we are seeking validation from a HOLLOW space. It is an illusion.
We work very hard at positioning ourselves to be liked and fashion ourselves in a way with optimal filters, cool shoes, good yoga poses, curated angles, that will (we hope) make us get lots of ‘likes’ and the more ‘likes’ we get, the happier we become and this is the dopamine hit we have all been conditioned to go for. It is not real (and it is harmful). This is not ‘living’.
My dear ones, I am dazzled by all of you. You are all incredible humans with beautiful human stories. Happy New Year and be brave. Be mindful with every step you take. Walk on purpose. Speak with kindness. Act with love. LOVE YOUR LIFE! You are capable of great things. Remember that for 2019 you will change, you will heal, you will cry, you will laugh, you will keep things and you will throw things away, you will be challenged, you will feel freedom, and you will grow in ways you never imagined possible. In our extraordinary world, if you look around you will see there is only love and we are all seeking the same thing – deeper connections while we are still alive in our humanness. Trust. Everything loves you.
You have this one life and that is simply all there is.
(photo credit Alyssa Wodabek Photography)