Sometimes it feels like we jump from one special occasion to another, as if crossing a creek, hopping from stone to stone. Halloween, for example, will be the next stone for our family this year. My 11 year old started counting down to Halloween when she began planning her unicorn costume sometime in June. Next, it’ll be my birthday, then Thanksgiving, other daughter’s birthday, and then, Christmas. You get my point.
We mark life with major events, like weddings, births, graduations, job promotions, relocations, and deaths. I do think it’s important to acknowledge these with revelry, gifts, showing up to celebrate, and for the last, appreciation, love, and support. What about all the other time, though? The waters of life that flow briskly by as we plan for the next stone, awaiting the next big happening?
This, I would argue, is where, when we take the time to notice and savor, we find so much love. Not the big, romantic, write-home-about-it kind of love, but the love that sustains us and makes us content with our lives. It’s in the flow that we discover moments that fill us and carry us forward with no fanfare, but often, a quiet and profound appreciation.
I’m talking about waking up to the aroma of fresh-brewed coffee made just the way I like it, because Rad knows, and he’s also put my favorite travel mug and coconut milk out next to the french press. It’s the sound of my dog’s claws moving along the hardwood floor at a frantic pace, excitedly anticipating our morning drive to drop off kid 3 at school. It’s the cool fall breeze kissing my skin as I walk outside. And the Snapchat from kid 1 living across the country, assuring me that 1) he’s alive; and that 2) he remembers his mom; and 3) he’s smiling, so things hopefully are going well today. It’s the excited tone in kid 2’s text sharing that her english teacher is delighted with her writing ability.
It’s the click-click-clicking game the squirrels play to torment my frantic dog, eager to climb the Oak to reach them. And the hug from an old friend as we run into each other while grocery shopping. A passage in a book that brings tears to my eyes because it’s so true and so real and so magic. My weekly hula class where I have learned to bravely chant, learning and holding close so much I somehow missed earlier about the culture in which I was raised. Cutting into an avocado and finding it just the right ripeness, yielding just enough to my touch. Causing happy surprise by helping a stranger on the street. Or sharing a compliment, guerilla style.
There is so, so much love in the water between the stones. Allow yourself to slow down and immerse yourself in it. Let it bathe you in gratitude and joy, and wash away all that other noise that depletes you. There is, after, all, so much love in-between.