Most mornings when I first open my eyes there are a few glorious seconds before I remember COVID 19 or the world in stages of lockdown or the sinking worry or the inherent isolation that edges us all inward, but then I do remember, and those disparaging thoughts instantly deluge any happiness I felt looking out the bedroom windows and wondering what joy this summer day might bring. In blended hope and resignation I attempt to lift myself out of despair through daily rituals. Onto the mat, moving through Yoga with Adriene, generally is reminder enough, but if I still can’t shake the gloom, there is Ryan Heffington to dance me into the light; if all fails, there is the unmistakable natural beauty surrounding me, bringing undeniable gifts in the field’s wildflowers or our household gardens or the backdrop of the majestic mountains or any number of placid lakes which are all blessings I can’t even count but perhaps can share with you all today. I invite you to stroll along. Stop and peer up. Take a breath. Dive in with me.
Let’s start with our favorite morning tea spot, the front porch, where if we are still enough the hummingbirds join for a fleeting sight and busy bumblebees too. Here, among the geraniums and fuchsia one can muse about any sort of day dream and all of them seem possible and delightful. We used to call ourselves lucky if a weekend morning started here, and now, they just about all do.
Little altars, a table top with vases, seating areas for shade, whether on the front stoop or back garden these spaces bring all the joy one might need on any June afternoon. This year we are stopping to notice and indulge in those spots more.
There are also spaces to just contemplate and read and write and our back deck is one of those places. We have filled it with planters, with tomatoes to flowers and just sit and watch it all grow. Here is our luxury and a place for dinner or to watch the setting sun. Bird song is the theme song to this spot.
Certainly there is time to stroll up the hill or ride along the path to remind me to keep my eyes on that not so distant horizon, the one that is there, and will always set me reaching forward. Gaze upward.
Once I venture high enough up our road I can see the storm clouds passing by the rain sheeting the whole world as its been for quite some time and will be through our tomorrows. Here is a good moment to exhale. Accept guardianship and responsibility and grace. This is ours to keep if we choose to do so.
From this high plateau, the last light of the day looks exactly as wondrous as the first glimpse of hope.
Perhaps if we stop to see what we have within our reach, we can forget for a while what we don’t, and in that place happiness is…