I took today to do mundane things. There were endless possibilities to choose from.
The last few weeks have been a blurry haze for me - various personal reasons. This morning I woke up in my usual mind fog but made a conscious effort to slow down today. It felt weird and uncomfortable for me. It took more conscious effort than I thought it would and the weirdest thing happened. For what felt like a very brief moment during the day, I had a sense of calm clarity. The house seemed a bit bigger, the colours seemed a bit brighter, time felt a bit more normal. I felt a bit more - me.
I picked up a book and read one and a half chapters of it. This is something that I seldom allow myself to do these days. It feels selfish to me because there are ten million other things I "should" be doing instead.
It was a good choice of book that I pulled out of the bookcase for the exercise - The Seat of the Soul which was perfect for the philosophical mood I found myself in. There were sentences that literally seemed to jump off the page at me and say "Here! Read this one - it's for you! Pay attention". After snuggles with my daughter Lory on the couch while reading, I decided to go do something more active and get some sunlight outside.
I weeded the veggie patch in a meticulous and deliberate way without rushing through it just to tick it off the list. Lory (who calls herself the plant protector now) diligently picked up each weed that I had removed and replanted it outside the veggie patch. She thought I was being rather cruel and wanted to give them "their own space" - which I was completely amazed by. I sat there watching her digging with her trowel in the hard clay, never getting discouraged. She planted about 4 of the larger ones before valiantly fending off StarBeam (our border collie who is a rather mischievous spirited canine) from stealing her prized weeds. I think a whole new part of my mind opened up watching this take place.
The fact that she was being so selfless in protecting plants that she felt deserved a space and not judging them for being weeds in the veggie patch, but honouring them for the fact that they are living things that I had mercilessly ripped out of their home. It made me swell with pride seeing how she was not interested in them being weeds and standing her ground for her belief that they too were deserving and worthy.
Sometimes I look at my kid and wonder where she has got this wealth of wisdom from, she has such a grasp on life and she freely expresses her emotions and stands by her convictions. She greets every day with vigor and enthusiasm even if there's nothing really exciting planned.
With this window of clarity, I have realized how muddled I've been lately. I seem to be rushing around each day just to get through it and get what's necessary done, but below that, I have been a bit of a zombie. I know that it's part of how I'm dealing with grief, but I'm missing out on the highlights a lot of the time, as well as some of the lessons inherent therein.
Often times we're so busy dealing with our own "stuff" (or not actually dealing with it but avoiding dealing with it) that we miss a lot.
In the last week I was amazed at the selfless nature and compassion that someone who barely knows me has shown. Humility for your fellow human. Someone that took the time to check in with me and see if I was okay. Someone that let me vent and rant about my perception of the current world. You know who you are and I have deep respect and gratitude for your compassion and just being willing to listen to someone being raw and angry and sad and going through a rough time - in other words - being human.
Today wasn't just a day. Today was a good day. When times are tough and things are hazy, sometimes one good day is enough to hold onto and use as fuel to have a slightly lighter load, to see things slightly differently, to appreciate the beauty within the chaos that is life these days.
Never forget that wisdom can be gained from younger or older peers, there is always an opportunity to learn from others.