Things that hurt, instruct. – Benjamin Franklin
Today’s date is significant to me. There were many years that this date brought me sadness. Without analyzing how I would feel, I woke up this morning, remembered the date and decided to feel thankfulness instead. So I woke up my oldest son (who was in my bed from last night’s bad dream) and told him that I love him and blew on his belly like I did when he was little. He laughed. Then I woke up my youngest son and kissed his face and told him that he is kind and smart and wonderful and that I love him, too. He smiled. We were starting out this day just right.
After I dropped them off at school, I thought about why I feel so happy today. I love my boys and I love my life. But I would not have the same type of appreciation for any of it if it were not for those days when I hated my life, those times that I thought God had it out for me and I could not catch a break.
Looking back, my biggest problem was that I could not accept things I could not change. Today I can.
A friend commented recently on how good I am at moving on. Fortunately and unfortunately, I have never felt like I had a choice and if given different resources, I may not have picked up the pieces when life fell apart. But even though someone moves on with the living, their mind can take them to other places. Places in the past or places in some imaginary world somewhere. I was one of those people.
Today I see powerful evidence that I am living in the present. I give most of the credit to Yoga and Meditation and for just showing up on my mat or my pillow. I have learned that my mind doesn’t control me anymore and if thoughts creep in that have no place in my present world, then I can simply push them away and come back to the gift of this moment.
This way of living and thinking has brought me more peace than I ever dreamed possible. Peace does not come from perfect circumstances, it comes from feeling each breath, seeing everything before you and accepting who and where you are with a heart that is open to endless possibilities.