Yesterday, I was thinking about this blog. About the reasons that I started it, about the little things in my life that I used to pay attention to that I now overlook on a daily basis. Often, multiple times in the same day. There’s little point in spinning something that’s happened to me into a bloated “introspective” essay when I spend a great deal of my days not thankful at all.
Which means that today, and hopefully for longer than today, I will look towards the little things.
I felt very thankful today for the sunrise. I woke up early, for once, and exercised. As I rolled out of bed, I rolled up the window blinds and gazed out into the gentle rays shimmering on the Texas grass. It’s easy to forget how beautiful the countryside is when you’re worried about your family, about the future, about finances, about what’s for dinner. When you think about all those things, and you have the kettle on, and the television talking, you’re too distracted.
I’ve been learning lately to embrace silence. Peace. I’m not one for this kind of thing, despite how my relaxed demeanor throws many of my friends off. If I’m not completing a task at any given moment, then I feel like I’m wasting my time. I forget just how invigorating it is to be.
To be is much more frightening than to do, buzzing around from one task to another. You numb yourself, you distract yourself. When the destination is the only goal, you forget the why of things. At least I do.
Exercising this morning, I took a little longer than usual while stretching. I’m sure any yoga master or pilates teacher would look at me for two seconds and begin to laugh, but I would laugh with them, after today. There is something in the release of taking one’s time. Inner stillness is actually far harder to accomplish than a swift jerking motion of the body while stretching. It takes time. It takes discipline.
I’ve been really worried about my future. The numbers haven’t been adding up in a way that I thought they were going to all those months ago when I was still in Indiana. The future seems far less certain than it did a while ago. And I feel less in control. God becomes distant, people become distant, even my sense of self becomes distant. And all I have left in my frantic, frazzled mind are aimless goals.
But today, I’ve been learning, at least a little, how to be, a bit more than I have been. And I’m thankful for this. I’m thankful for this country’s independence. And fireworks and barbecue, to be sure; but also for learning how to appreciate the freedoms bestowed upon us. Not merely the legislative ones, but the personal ones, that nature and nature’s Creator have so wondrously bestowed.
I’m thankful today for existing. What are you thankful for?