Friday, March 14, 2014

on appreciating the journey and the small joys

At this time last week,  people in our area experienced a major weather event that altered life for a time. An ice storm blew through, destroying trees and power equipment, leaving most of us in the dark and cold and some without water, for the better part of a week. The basic necessities of living were now the very focus of our days. Food, light, gasoline, warmth, water, all of this became our priority, along with assessing the damage and cleaning up the mess that was left behind.


Now that things are back to normal and we’re at the point that we’re dealing with the clean-up and restocking our refrigerators, I notice that the conversations have changed. People are talking about how late Spring is coming in this year. Where is the abundance of flowers we usually see in March? Why is it still so cold when we should be donning our lighter wear and packing away our wooly items?


People are funny. Our minds work in mysterious ways.  We all waited and waited for things to be restored and once it was then we’re on to the next achievement or goal. I’m not suggesting that people should wallow in their misfortune, but maybe we should be enjoying the moment reached, the victory achieved, before moving on to the next big event. Daily happiness is made up of all those small moments and a lifetime of happiness is the result of all those moments met and memories made. It’s important to stop, take a breath, and notice the small events that happen between the bigger occasions.  It’s like walking along the beach with the aim of reaching the pier off in the distance.  It’s great to set a goal and it’s equally ok not to reach it.  You can stop on your sandy walk, look up, see that pier far off and still notice the beauty of where your steps have led you to this point. It’s still a pretty great journey, even if you never reach the pier.

So celebrate right now. There is some small thing that you can find that is worthy of your attention and can bring you satisfaction, if not real happiness. You get to decide. It all comes from inside of you. You can’t let outside events, outside people take over control of your emotions. So pay attention. Take notice of the small moments. Celebrate the journey as well as the goal reached.  You can enjoy what you have rather than focusing all of your attention on what you haven’t.

As for the ice storm, I celebrated the fact that there was a coffee shop and a few brave, patient employees situated in a teeny, tiny section of the main road that hadn’t lost power. It gave me a place to find respite from the cold and something warm to put in my stomach and at night, we could pass some of the dark hours at our favorite pub downtown to play some music, watch the game, sit with friends and enjoy a beer. It wasn’t a lot – but it was everything!

16 comments:

A Place to Reside said...

What a quietly powerful perspective on a (truly) difficult situation.

karen said...

I lost electricity last year for four days. We stayed at a hotel due to no heat and I threw away two frigs worth of food :( I haven't recovered still and am grateful for electricity, running water and so on. Glad you are back to connected!!

Dee said...

Your first picture is gorgeous. It's amazing and sad that something so beautiful can cause such destruction.

Glad you have your power back and glad you had a place for coffee to warm the bones. A good coffee shop is priceless!

I'm Sara. said...

Lovely: words, thoughts, and pictures. As always. Sending you warm thoughts!

Tessa~ Here there be musing said...

Wow, you really did have a bad one!

I'm so glad it is now a memory. And that you have gotten thoughtful Wisdom, out of experiencing it.

And thank you for sharing this found Wisdom, with us.

So much of this, is Common Sense, isn't it? Pay attention to the journey... Etc. Etc. But we need someone to point out all this Common Sense to us, sometimes. Someone who has had a disruption in their life. And who used it, to think deep thoughts.

Gentle hugs,
Tessa~

Tessa~ Here there be musing said...

Sooooooo glad you are warm again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

eileeninmd said...

The ice storms are awful, but the trees and bushes look beautiful. We have seen a lot of damage from our last ice storm, branches are down everywhere. The worst is losing the power..I hope you are back to normal now, this seem to be the never ending winter. Enjoy your weekend!

Rambling Woods said...

We had a terrible ice storm in 2006 and were without power for a week... I don't take power for granted anymore.. Michelle

Tracy Altieri said...

And the beauty that you managed to capture, in spite of the inconveniences!

Linda said...

Well written piece and the photos are beautiful.

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

You have a real gift for appreciating life. Whatever it brings. The ice pictures are almost like sculptures. But although I understand your message, I still do hope you get some Spring soon!

floating thru fields said...

great post and great perspective :)
after being without things it makes you more grateful for them when you get them back. I have learned a lot about that this year and I'm trying to live in the moment and enjoy now :)
thanks for the comments on my blog :)

Susan said...

Wow, I'm glad you could find a warm place to go and enjoy your time!

Buttons said...

Wow my daughter got caught up in that weather and yes people seem to bounce back. I think that is the good thing about human nature nothing keeps us down for now. I would have been sitting enjoying that coffee shop too:) Nature sure is pretty. Glad your back to normal.B

kat said...

Have to say that it does look beautiful through the lens.

If something is destroyed, something better starts growing, I think. Of cause at the moment of a loss it's hard to see. And people adapt themselves to situations lot harder than the nature.
Wish you all the best!

Storybook Woods said...

Wow, really stunning photos. We never get ice like that. It looks really beautiful. Clarice