Staying in the Moment.

I was pulled in many directions. Pain from the past with questions that never got answered, or worries about the future. And yet, my inability or unwillingness to stay in the moment perpetuates this looking back. Till it hit me; if I don’t learn how to stay in the present now, then my future will also be spent looking back. 

How did I come to this realization? It came from sharing life with two little round-headed boys I know; my grandsons, Jude and Charlie. 

One time they came over and I was emotionally wrapped up in something and when they left I realized I missed their visit. They were here but I wasn’t. That was my wake-up call. 

Wonderful things have resulted from the lessons God is teaching me with these two special little guys.

  • I am participating in my life.
  • I am laughing more.
  • I am more content.

For quite some time I have been on the sidelines of my own life, observing it, but not participating. Either being pulled into my future, worrying about how things were going to work out, or yanked back into my past ruminating about things unchangeable. I was not free.

Now that I am learning to stay in the present I’m noticing things I would have otherwise missed. Life is full of funny things, like Charlie just announcing that he smashed a little spider with his foot. Or maybe watching twenty sparrows in the backyard eating the little pieces of bread we scattered for them. It’s like I found part of myself that was buried.

There was the time Jude showed great insight. I shared with him, ”When I talk about this is it makes me so sad,” and he innocently responded, “Then why are you talking about it?” 

I am more content in life than I’ve ever been. Not that I don’t wish some things were different, just that I’m okay in the waiting. I am aware of all I have and I feel rich. 

Yesterday while reading to my grandsons, Charlie handed me a couch pillow and said, “Here, you can have this one too.”

That little gesture of love will stay with me and gently warm my heart for days. I feel so loved. As will the time that I asked Jude, “Do you know I love you?” 

He responded, “How could I NOT know?”

God is the only one who is omnipresent. He is in our past, our present and our future. When we try to live anywhere but in our present, we will fail. He gives us grace for each day.  

Learning about being emotionally present has helped me understand my past more clearly. My dad was emotionally absent in my life, that doesn’t mean I have to follow suit.

As the oldest daughter in a house of 5 children, my many responsibilities prevented me from being a child. Many others have experienced this same thing. The good news is that God can restore the years the locusts have eaten. I’m learning how to be a kid now.

Children are great teachers. Watch how much they enjoy things. When children laugh, I believe heaven laughs with them. 

And for the most part, children live in the present. That’s why their disappointments are so crushing. Children for the most part, focus on what they will be doing today, except of course when a birthday is on the near horizon.   

Who would have thought one of God’s tools in my life would be these two little round-headed boys? God did; he knew it all the time. Thank you, God.

missed you

Sorry I missed you.

This might have been a note left tacked on a door when you popped in at a friend’s house only to find he/she was not in.

Or it can mean something completely different. 

Sometimes when I’m with someone, it’s not completely. My mind is elsewhere traveling like the speed of light, but in many directions. Perhaps I’m thinking of all the things I have to do, maybe I’m replaying a conversation that didn’t go very well. 

I’m realizing that I’m not always where I am. Years ago I read an essay in a class on being a Master student. It talked about being where you are, being present. That article impacted me in a big way.

At one time or another, maybe you too have talked to someone who seemed so preoccupied. And you’re not aware till you ask a question and see a startled look.

The thing that really brought this home for me was a recent visit I had with my two grandsons. So many things on my mind vied for my full attention. The two precious ones before me were one part of my busy day. It wasn’t until their blue Mazda rolled away that I realized I had hardly been with them. Oh, I had read to them, played with them, but I felt like it was only partially. Like I missed it completely.

This is an area I want to work on. Being where I am; being present. I want to enjoy each moment with whoever is before me. I have known people who did this with relative ease, or at least it looked like that. When I was with them it was as if no one else existed. That nourished a hunger in me I didn’t know existed. 

So, let me just say to anyone who has talked to me and noticed somewhere in the conversation I left, I’m sorry. Sorry I missed you. And I’ll try harder. I’ll try being where I am.