I just found myself chastising my every move– or should I say, lack of moves– wondering why I couldn’t stop staring at the falling snow outside my window.
I’m sitting here in my study where we have this nice lovely big window overlooking our backyard. Snow is falling quietly. In fact, the whole world seems so quiet right now, except for an occasional plow that goes by. It is so calm and peaceful. Cancer has a way of diminishing the quiet, or at least it tries to. I long to hold onto the feeling of serenity. I am by no means a “winter person” (hence my four years down at U of Miami) but I am trying to see the beauty in this stillness. I know that later it may rain and freeze and then be big piles of brown inconvenience that everybody will slip and slide on, but for now, it is simply beautiful. I can’t help but hum to myself “It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas.” Even though I don’t celebrate the holiday I can still appreciate the joy and the festivities, I suppose.
But I can’t seem to move. I’m sitting here at my desk feeling sleepy, with a cup of hot cocoa in my hands (when I’m not typing) and I’m just kind of staring out into nothingness and not doing… Well, anything. I say to myself, “Get your act together, Sam. You have the whole day. You’re in your workout clothes, just go do it. Or hey the laundry needs to be done, the kitchen should be cleaned up, go upstairs and make the bed. Why would you just be sitting here doing nothing? If you’re going to do that, at least go to the couch and turn on the TV.”
How did I get here? Who is this voice that is telling me it is far from OK to just sit in my chair sipping hot chocolate and doing absolutely nothing? Is it just me, or are we in this kind of ongoing race that tells us our lives are only important and meaningful if we are busy every second of every day?
I for one am beginning to hate having the TV on. Sometimes I just want the hushed sound of my heat cranking and the cats pitter-patter of their little paws on the hardwood floors.
I should read my book. I should journal. I should work out. I should clean. I should, I should, I should.
Today I resist the urge to listen to that little (mean) voice that tells me that simply doing nothing is a waste of time.
Today I go get a second slice of banana bread and go back to my chair and sit, silently but lovingly enjoying the stillness that only a winter snowstorm can bring. It is as if g-d or the universe is saying “Slow down. Enjoy nature. Don’t do anything but be right now.”
The snowfall slows, and my heart feels let down. It was the snow that opened my eyes to the joys of just being in the first place, and I don’t want it to go away so quickly.
I think: Perhaps we are afraid that if we slow down we will finally have a chance to hear our real voice, and in that, our real fears. What would your mind and your heart and your gut actually say to you if you sat down to have a conversation with it, without your phone nearby? Or the TV on?
Mine is saying: Crap on a cracker. You have a lot to be scared of.
I listen. I don’t like it, but I listen.
Then I listen again.
That’s it. We don’t know anything but today. Live to your hearts content, but slow down and savor the most important connection of all; the one with yourself. Living can mean being quiet. Being still. Doing nothing.
Go get that second piece of banana bread and just live.