I didn’t post yesterday despite the fact that I’d made a resolution to do so every Monday. Over a month ago, I vowed to write something inspiring/motivational at the beginning of each week. I don’t really have any excuse except that I needed a break from this screen, so I decided to give myself a break from feeling guilty about that and post a “Missed Monday” one today.
I love writing most of the time, but there comes a time when I think it’s important to break the cord and unplug myself from technology. I did that from Friday until now, only checking email sporadically to comment on a few blogs or to attend to a few inquiries that I needed to answer. I left my phone at home when I’d go for walks or to get outside and enjoy the simple things.
I do that at times. I turn off the television, don’t watch it for a day or two. I try to listen to the “quiet,” instead of the nonstop, constant news that I’ve determined is there at times to distract us, anger us or keep us focused on what’s wrong with the world instead of what’s so right with it. And there is so much right with it. Despite what we see (and I often think we’re shown the absolute worst) instead of all the people out there that are doing great things, that believe in humanity and treating everyone fairly. That good stuff doesn’t make for great ratings, does it?
The past few days have been spent walking very long distances and biking. The sun was out (finally) and when that happens here, everyone soaks it up. People seem nicer, I don’t notice the aggressive drivers or those who blow the horn when I hesitate for half a second at a light when it turns green. It was Mother’s Day so I talked to my family frequently. My husband cooked me a great dinner for my birthday. We walked, laughed and played.
The older I get, the more I realize it’s the simple things that you remember and that matter the most. I remember times when my sisters and I laughed so hard that we couldn’t stop — you know that laughter that just won’t let you go — you can’t catch your breath? I remember the first time my husband told me he loved me. It wasn’t some grandiose thing; we were just sitting in a bar in a small town, there was a lot of noise and everyone was having a great time. I looked at him and amid all the noise, he said, “I love you.”
It’s usually those simple instances in life that are the most important. I’ve moved around since I was eighteen, more times that I can count. Every place I’ve left, I’ve had to let go of something, lighten my load. I’ve given away furniture that wouldn’t fit into a UHaul to strangers and I always, always leave money in a drawer so that the new person that moves in finds it. I picture him or her finding a few bucks and being happy about that.
I figure by the time I’m 80 or so, I’ll have a chair, bed, my husband and a few clothes. Don’t get me wrong, I love nice things. Money makes life easier. But I’ve had it and not had it and the same thing holds true, despite the place or income — it’s the simple things that get you through the worst and the best times. The most beautiful place in the world can be a hell and the most barren place can be a paradise. It’s the who you are in that place and what you value the most while you’re there that makes all the difference.
Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication. Leonardo da Vinci
Nothing is more simple that greatness; indeed to be simple is to be great. Ralph Waldo Emerson
The simplest things are often the truest. Richard Bach
Making the simple complicated is commonplace; making the complicated simple, awesomely simple, that’s creativity. Charles Mingus
With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. From Max Ehrmann’s Desiderata