I love finding treasure. It might be that I put on a jacket that I haven’t worn in a long time and there in the pocket I find a five dollar bill. Or perhaps I decide to clean out a closet or a drawer and there, caught up in all the stuff, I find a piece of jewelry that I thought I had lost.
I sit at my computer desk two or three times a day almost every day. I have had this desk for a few years now. It’s a typical computer desk with the working area and then a series of cubby holes and shelves set at eye level. Sitting there yesterday I noticed a little wad of papers tucked into one of the shelves. I pulled them out and, voila – treasure!! Here is what I found.
“Aerodynamically the bumblebee shouldn’t be able to fly, but the bumblebee doesn’t know that so it goes on flying anyway.” (Mary Kay Ash, founder of Mary Kay Cosmetics)
“If I had my life to start over, I would start barefoot earlier in the spring and stay that way later in the fall.” (Nadine Stair, poet)
“After all these years, I am still involved in the process of self-discovery. It’s better to explore life and make mistakes than to play it safe. Mistakes are part of the dues one pays for a full life.” (Sophia Loren, Italian actor)
“Getting married is easy. Staying married is more difficult. Staying happily married for a lifetime should rank among the fine arts.” (Roberta Flack, singer and song writer)
“You can take no credit for beauty at sixteen. But if you are beautiful at sixty, it will be your soul’s own doing.” (Marie Stopes, writer and scientist)
“If you find it in your heart to care for somebody else, you will have succeeded.” (Maya Angelou, author and inspirational speaker)
Notice that all those little gems come from women – great women!! But, I have to be honest, some of those pieces of paper carried men’s names too! Here are a few more treasures.
“To know what is right and not do it is the worst cowardice.” (Confucious, ancient eastern philosopher)
“In the depth of winter, I finally learned that there was within me an invincible summer.” (Albert Camus, philosopher)
“Start by doing the necessary, then what’s possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.” (St. Francis)
“The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.” (Albert Einstein, physicist, philosopher, author)
And here is one final piece of wisdom that unfortunately carried no author’s name.
“Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance. Every morning when I open my eyes, I tell myself that it is special. Every day, every minute, every breath truly is a gift from God.” (Anonymous)
Most of my life up to age thirty five was lived either in some bleak yesterday or in a fantasy tomorrow. Rarely did I live in today – in the present moment which, when you think about it, is really the only moment that we are truly assured of. This breathe, this moment.
My time and energy would be spent (wasted would probably be a better word to use!) rehashing some past event or conversation, trying to rearrange it in my mind – to my advantage, of course! Not only would I do this the day following the situation, several times in that day, but I would run a smorgasbord of variations on the theme for several days, even weeks. It was exhausting and totally non-productive.
I tell my friends, when I am recounting this bizarre past behaviour, that my mind was a veritable Steven Spielberg!! High drama, suspense, pathos, and melodrama along with revenge and sometimes murder or wicked torture, merged in an explosion of creative ideas. But then I am quick to point out that I did not exhibit one iota of Spielberg’s intelligence because I never made a dime from my creative mind.
This kind of explains another quirkiness that belongs to my past. You see I wanted to keep all that drama to myself (who knows why my crazy fingers just typed “myself” with an uppercase “M”????). It wasn’t meant for sharing with the general public. I just wanted to wallow in it all on my own. Perhaps my soul managed to make a secret of it because it knew just how insane all that drama was! Seriously, when I think of what went on in my mind sometimes I truly believe that if anyone knew I would have been committed.
Then, when I wasn’t trying to “fix” the past, I would spend hour upon hour dreaming up some marvelously romantic future for myself. There would always be a handsome man, lots of money, and a life full of leisure and pleasure involved, and I would rarely be living in my native country. Other geographical places would always seem far more exotic and far more suited to my sublimely wonderful self!!
Thank God I choose to live in the here and now today. There is such joy in just being aware that I am breathing – in, out, in, out. There is nothing I love more than to sit in my screened room and look at the trees, the birds, the flowers, the butterflies, and recognize that they are there, right now, and I can enjoy them. Have you ever sat still and watched a hummingbird hovering over a flower just two yards from your gaze? It is an absolute miracle of the Now.
Today my energy and time are devoted to the present moment. I no longer suffer mental and emotional exhaustion from the sheer effort of creativity with no true or tangible result. When I allow myself creative freedom today it is to really produce something – a card, a poem, a letter, a posting for my web page. And most importantly, my heart is peaceful and satisfied today.