As I drove home, my eyes gravitated on a single hot air balloon in the sky. The blue and white streaked sky cradled the flicker of the golden sunset. I concentrated on what is in front of me. Light and darkness. Brilliance and dullness. Ordinary and striking.
There was a real chance that I could have missed this opportunity, but I made a conscious choice to pay attention. Learning the words, pay attention, helps create a real chance of sinking into the present. It changes the way I view my entire world. Every second is a little more of a featured moment in my life. This is what I have paid attention to this week:
The way my daughter dangles her feet on the school bench. As soon as she sees my car pull up, she springs up, almost like she is intersecting with me for the first time and smiles as she jumps into her car seat. That single second shows how she looks at every moment as a new and fresh, excited about what may come next.
Listening to the Lumineers, Rihanna, Phillip Phillips in my car and singing the choruses to their songs in my loudest off-key voice. I am aware that as I sing, a sense of liberationevokes the energy of youth and a spontaneous energy that offers a comforting feeling in my gut.
The silence of the morning provides comfort. This solitude does not fade, but creates a yearning for more quiet. More time to sink into the even cadence of my breath.
The sadness in the young woman’s eyes at familiar intersection. She holds a sign that says, “Need help.” Paying attention means confronting what someone else’s story maybe and not taking your own story for granted.
Pay attention. It matters.
You’re right paying attention does matter. Those moments we encounter have the power to be life changing. Much happens when we recognize ourselves in others and vise versa.
Love this! I love hot air balloons… ..I have rode in one before and it’s awesome! Love the vision of your daughter waiting for you. 🙂
I find that sometimes noticing everything does have it’s drawbacks. Hence, ignorance is bliss?
It’s in paying attention that we remain present, isn’t it Rudri? Each day, in varying circumstances, taking what passes and envelopes us as they come. What a lovely post and reminder.
I love this. It’s so easy to keep our eyes on our feet as we plod through life, rather than looking up, and taking in those details. Thank you for this post.
What a lovely reminder to notice the small things – the little moments that make up the day. There is beauty in them.
I’m definitely guilty of not paying enough attention. I started doing the 365project and I found it has helped me to notice things I probably would have otherwise missed. Great shot of the balloon and a good reminder for us all!
It can be so difficult to slow down in such a rushabout world, but the rewards are precious!
Thank you for sharing!
Great post, and a great reminder to SLOW DOWN and enjoy life’s moments. Visiting from SITS.
Beautiful! I wasn’t expecting this. Thanks for sharing. Visiting from SITS.
What a beautiful post and such a great reminder. I often find that I get lost in my head when I could be paying attention, so that I don’t miss that balloon or a rainbow. Living in the city, I was always bombarded with so many things to pay attention to – I was usually walking and I could stop to appreciate my surroundings. But in the suburbs, and in my car, I find myself focused on my task or thinking, thinking, thinking.
My homeless city neighbors. One had a sign that said he didn’t steal, so please help – I didn’t know if it was true, but I wanted to believe him. Another one had written “Hot Wheels” on the back of his please help sign to show his appreciation of certain cars – I thought that was smart and funny. And there was one older man who wore a wedding ring, always stopped to chat with me, and got bullied off his place under an overpass – he was the one I always looked out for and helped.
I am back to blogging and so happy to be reading your thoughtful posts! I missed you 🙂
I think I’ll be using your blog as my own guide post this year, Rudri. Your posts have a consistent theme of being mindful and grateful, things I want in my life this year as well. As you know, I recently wrote about my nerves surrounding the passage of time. I realize I have the anxiety I do because I am not mindful enough, and I allow too much time to pass without fully living and experiencing each moment…and this makes me feel that too much time is slipping through my fingers. I know I can live more consciously and more fully that I do.