So have you had a good year so far?
My guess is when I asked you this, you started thinking about what has happened (or not happened) in your life from January 1st until today. Because that’s how we’ve grown up thinking about years, they go from the first day of January to the last day of December. Then we start all over again.
The danger of this is, when we have a setback or two, we can easily slip into feeling this isn’t going to be “our” year, and we might has well write the rest of it off, and begin with fresh hope next January 1st.
I found myself thinking a similar thing a couple of days ago. Some amazing stuff has happened this year, but some other stuff I had planned and hoped to do hasn’t come off yet. Or, more truthfully, I haven’t committed the time and energy and focus to get it done yet.
So the thought crossed my mind – “Maybe NEXT year is going to be my big breakthrough year”…
Have you ever had similar thoughts?
It’s great to plan to have a brilliant year next year, but with that “next year” condition attached, it writes off the rest of this calendar year. And as we speak, we’re not even half way through it yet.
The truth of course is that the next year of your life starts today, right here in this moment. Every second is a starting point for something new, something remarkable, something you’ve never done before.
Add to this the fact that however we sum up and review whole days or months or years, or indeed lives, we can only experience and enjoy what we have right here in this moment.
You don’t need to have had a wonderful day to have a wonderful moment.
“Flowers grow out of dark moments. Therefore, each moment is vital. It affects the whole. Life is a succession of such moments and to live each, is to succeed.” – Corita Kent
A personal example of such a moment comes to mind.
Four years ago, almost to the day, my Nan died (my father’s mother) after a slow deterioration over the last decade of her life. My brother and I went to her funeral, but my dad couldn’t come.
It’s not that he didn’t want to. He wanted to more than anything. He was incredibly close to his mum, she was always the number one woman is his life, and he was utterly devastated when she died.
He couldn’t come because he was in the final throes of his 15 year battle with cancer, laying in hospital recovering from yet another operation, and could barely move, let alone attend a funeral an hour and a half away in sweltering summer heat.
When the funeral was over, I called my dad to tell him how it went, and to say the service was dignified and touching, and Nan would’ve been happy.
My father told me that the nurses looking after him, knowing of the funeral and his incapacity, had arranged a small memorial service for him in the hospital chapel, at the same time as my Nan’s funeral, so my dad could attend in his own way.
His voice was broken and he was in tears telling me, as I was listening.
Now I’m no stranger to emotional moments.
But my dad was. That was only the second time I’d ever heard my dad cry in my life. The first time was a few hours earlier when I’d phoned him to say we were just leaving for the funeral.
This wonderfully touching act by the nurses looking after my father was an amazing surge of hope and humanity amidst all this sadness and despair. A reminder that people do care, and that a simple kind gesture can profoundly move another human being, and in that moment change their lives.
On a difficult, emotional, and terribly sad day, those nurses had created a beautiful, poignant moment for my dad to pay his last respects to the woman he’d worshipped for 62 years.
And they’d created this moment now for me talking to my dad on the phone, the most emotional and open conversation we’d ever had, and would ever have.
Any of us can create these moments, at any moment. We all have an incredible capacity to create. Yes this includes you.
You don’t have to wait until it’s your big year, your big month, your big day. You can make it happen today, right now.
“Many people die with their music still in them. Why is this so? Too often it is because they are always getting ready to live. Before they know it, time runs out.” – Oliver Wendell Holmes
It’s always about the moments. It’s always in the beautiful details. Make yours count. Don’t let your music die unheard.
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