The secret to everyday magic is that it’s always there, we just don’t have eyes to see it.
One day I’m walking down the street and right on the sidewalk there is this huge vintage lampshade with a half drunk bottle of Pepsi on top of it. People are just walking by, because obviously it’s junk, except that… it’s not just that. I sit and stare and take pictures. This belonged to somebody, it has memories and a past. How did it end up there? I’m just thinking about it now, looking at the picture, but at that time I had no thoughts about it, I was just staring in amazement at that piece of garbage that decided to make a sidewalk so much better.
So many times we just don’t know how to be happy. We are afraid to enjoy the little things, waiting for bigger things to come along, wasting the precious present moment. We don’t learn to live in the now, we learn to plan and wait for something better and hold off and save the best for last. What a waste! Eat the cupcake first! Love without boundaries. You don’t know what tomorrow brings. Maybe nothing, maybe everything. Stop waiting for enlightenment! Be happy now or you’ll never be happy later.
I’m slowly learning to be happy; it hasn’t been part of my culture or education. But I am learning: happiness, gratitude, love, yes, you can learn them at any age. It is a slow process for me, and a constant challenge, but it has the best rewards. I’m learning to let the smallest things make me happy: a cloud, the brush of a blade of grass against my foot… I’m learning to be grateful for what I do have and what I don’t have yet and especially for what I am or I am struggling to become. And yes, it is a struggle. The best method is the ‘letting go’ method, but I am not that advanced yet.
Last week, I was terrified about serious health problems. I go to the park to just calm down and connect with nature; it is usually one of my go to’s in a bad situation: I sit down under a tree, bare feet on grass, connecting. I sit there for a while. Maybe a couple of hours. It’s summer; everything is alive around me. Light blue, innumerable shades of green, gold. Children playing, yelling their hearts out, running circles. And despite all my internal turmoil, I realize it’s a blessed time. Just like any other moment in time that we usually fail to see.
I am also especially learning to receive love. In the past I used to protect my parents against painful things that I was going through. Now I know this is not my job. I am the child no matter how old I am. So I dare to call and tell them what I’m going through. And they immediately decide to come over and come with me to the hospital the next day. Like never before, I accept it. When I hang up the phone I immediately burst into tears under my tree, among the kids, bicycles, lovers kissing, dogs barking. I just do, feels like the right things to do, without being able to label the feeling for what it is. What I know is that I’ve just received the love that was offered to me. And it feels like something I should have done all along.
Open up to the love. Don’t be an idiot.