Breathe it in

I caught myself looking in the mirror. I try not to make it a habit of peering too deeply or I end up noticing blemishes and other trivial things. While I studied my face, time felt like it was standing still. I was grateful for each blemish, my eyebrows, my nose. I realized that exact moment would never exist again.  Gone into thin air it will go. I will age, my hair will grow, and my face will change. If I am fortunate, I will develop laugh lines.

All too often I forget to take a step back and breathe it in. My mind too busy evaluating the bigger picture. Nonetheless, I remain cognizant that until I am unabashedly grateful for something, anything, there will never be enough. I want to strive and succeed, but I more desperately want to feel whole in the moment.

As an exercise in being present, I take a personal inventory.

Today I didn't solve world hunger. I didn't single handedly build a brand, save a life, or give a talk at a TED Conference. I wasn't able to run five miles. I'm not necessarily my ideal weight. There are still many unknowns. 

But I did smile at a stranger while walking down Bloomfield Avenue. She was nearing eighty or so and looked sullen until I acknowledged her. Then she flashed the toothiest grin I've ever seen. I saw a child's spirit in her eyes. 

I fixed my bed. There is abundant research in psychology supporting the notion that a fixed bed will enhance overall happiness. I even left the rest of the house somewhat clean when I departed this morning. If the house was a mess though, at least that bed was pristine, every pillow in its place.

There was a luscious latte at Raymond's. Its foam reminded me of a Disney movie. Finding hidden meanings in my food is a simple pleasure I enjoy twofold. 1. Meaning is uncovered. 2. Food and drink is had. 

I learned something new at work. Actually four or five completely new things. It is both humbling and infuriating all at once to see how much is left to discover. Without even scratching the surface, I am tickled by the possibilities.

My Nana surprised me. I find it remarkable that you can know a person your entire life, and they still manage to do something you hadn't anticipated. Out of the blue she used sexy in a sentence, via text I might add. She texts, yes. She is just the coolest woman. Cooler then I'll likely ever be. 

My cousins and I hiked to an overlook in the Pocono Mountains. My fingers were numb and eyes teared, but my mind was clear. The air was crisp. James will argue Pennsylvania air is the cleanest air you will find. 


At that moment, there was truth to his hometown prejudice.

I called a friend, made chocolate chip cookies, and said my prayers.


A recurring theme in my thoughts is how we as people endeavor to find our place.  For me that "place" is yet to be identified, unless I've already found it. That is not so far fetched to consider. Wherever I am is the only place I have.  I might as well breathe it in and make it count.