There is something incredibly freeing about realizing the only important moment is right now. To think that the negatives of yesterday can stay there, that any mistakes you made before can be learned from and moved past. “Blink your eyes, and the world you see next did not exist when you closed them.” There is a magic that happens in the present, in the NOW, that is sprinkled with newness and possibility but yet grounded. “The perfect moment is now.”
What things can stop us from appreciating the now? A schedule that is too busy or too demanding? A laundry list of things left to do around the house? A family member that is hurting or sick? Our lives will always make demands of us, but there are always opportunities to stop, breathe and reassess.
Take this moment and connect to your five senses. Can you, like Pratchett says, look up at a sky that you’ve never seen before? Can you hear the birds in the trees or traffic moving past? Feel your clothes against your body, your feet against the ground? Smell a nearby restaurant or flowering tree? Taste the gum in your mouth or the coffee you had earlier? What is your NOW?
When you can connect to your physicality, you can take a breath. Acknowledge the details you missed before – Isn’t the sky beautiful today? Don’t the birds sound beautiful? What is that wonderful smell? Find the good. “Be glad of it.”
But what happens when it’s hard to find the good? I believe that there is value and beauty in experiencing all the range of emotions, including pain and sorrow. The bad feelings are not infinite (even in the moments that feel that way), and that is the power of it – “The universe is, instant by instant, recreated anew.” Moments will continue to come and move and stack upon each other until you “blink your eyes, and the world you see next did not exist when you closed them.”
So revel in the now, however you are experiencing it. Life has a way to keep moving and flowing, and “instant by instant, recreated anew.” This hard part will pass. The newness will soon be here. So find your five senses, breathe and enjoy whatever part of the “now” that you can.
*I really love this quote because it speaks to my love of the now, but struggle a little with the word “appropriate” – that there’s only one “appropriate state of the heart” and that it’s joy. I actually completely disagree with that. We experience each moment clouded by circumstance. I don’t really care if there’s a new sky over my head if I just experienced a death in the family. And when I look up and see that sky, I’m definitely not feeling joy in that moment.