here and now.

“Use your heart. Understand. Learn to see things
in the now, not as they were or will be, or as they might or
should be, but as they are, right now, in this moment. The
heart sees the now; the mind only sees the next. If you can’t
learn to see the now, you’ll never see what’s truly there, and
then where will you be?”
“Trapped”
“Precisely. But if you take care of the now, the future will
work out as it should.” 
― E.J. PattenReturn to Exile

One of the sweetest gifts I received after having Charlie was from April. She gave me a necklace with the mantra “Here and Now” inscribed on it. She explained it was what got her through the tough newborn and infant phases and grounded her to stay in the moment. The here and now can often be scary. Especially when you have an infant, are exhausted, and in flat out survival mode. But, when we don’t live in the here and now . . . we risk losing so much.

Today, I weathered what I can only describe as the lowest of lows as a wife and as a mother. What happened isn’t important right now. Maybe one day I will share. But, now, as I prepare to go to bed and put this day behind me, I am pausing to reflect on the “here and now” and how can I draw strength from this mantra to reconcile this day and move on to the next.

Fact is, life can be so incredibly overwhelming. Especially when you’ve been pulled under by a wave and your gut instinct is to start wildly trying to paddle your way out. When you’re engulfed in the wave you don’t know which way is up. You’re disoriented and it’s all consuming.  But, if you were to pause for a second, gather yourself and stay calm, the wave would pass and you’d float to the top.

Most of life’s biggest waves that pull us under are matters of the heart. And it’s true, the heart only knows the now. It cannot predict the next and what tomorrow, let alone a year or five years from now will bring. But, as humans this concept is often too hard to swallow. We often can’t accept living in the moment and feel as though we need to make decisions that will impact the whole course of our life. So, we allow our mind to take over to combat our fears and to try and predict what the heart wants . . . leaving us paddling wildly underwater, often in the wrong direction.

When we get to the wrong destination, it’s often too late to turn back because you have nothing left in you to paddle back in the right direction. Your mind spent so much time getting you there, battling against currents and exhausting your every reserve, that it didn’t give your heart a fighting chance to allow the future to unfold and reveal itself in due time.

And then it’s too late.

That’s how we end up living a life of regrets.

I have a lot of regrets in life and I’ve spent my fair share of time trying to live in the “next” and not in “now”. When I have allowed myself to listen to my heart, it’s never led me astray. The path my heart takes me hasn’t always been the easy one. It’s led to outcomes I often never would have predicted.

But, it’s absolutely never let me down.

So, here’s to living in the here and now, calming our minds, and trusting in our hearts to float us up. To take us where ever it is we’re meant to go.

Comments

  1. Hugs Alison. Hope you’re okay.

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