Life weighs heavy on everyone I know right now. Businesses are failing, employment is lost, and relationships are breaking up, surgeries are scheduled and bank accounts have dwindled. Yep, every once in a while the universe seems to step in like a kid clearing a board game and scatter all we have built to the wind. Do not pass Go, Do not collect $200 and forget about your Get Out of Jail Free card. In short, it feels like a big fat lady in dark pants just sat down on your head and all you can see is black and all you can feel is fear.
At times like these I force myself to look at all that is right in the world, by turning my attention to the beauty that surrounds me and the enduring things that feed my soul. Not an easy task, but certainly a way of fighting back. That was my morning assignment, which I’m sharing with you, in case you’re in need of the same medicine.
#1. How lucky am I to belong to one of the most beautiful health clubs in the world. I get to swim every morning under radiant blue skies, slip into pristine water kissed by sunlight and look out at towering palms dancing in tropical breezes. Does it get better than that? My morning head is usually a scramble of night dreams, thoughts, worries and client sessions, but as the water opens to me, all of those things slowly, stroke by stroke, begin to move away, until I am left with nothing but feelings of calm and being held. The water is my way of coming home.
#2. My next blessing is the bike path. Can you believe a paved path that travels through the woods from my house to the health club? I never have to worry about a car at my back, uneven sidewalks or being taken out by a driver’s door. It’s perfectly perfect and there is a split rail fence so you can ride your horse on the unpaved part, if bikes are not your thing.
#3. There are some things that just belong together, the way ice cream belongs to the cone below. That’s me and my bike, my third blessing. It has a sturdy wire basket on the front that holds almost everything: groceries, bottled water and swim gear. It makes me feel like I’m in the Wizard of Oz, “I’ll get you my pretty.” It has sunshine yellow paint and fills me up with ‘happy’ every time I climb aboard.
In my thirties, you’d find me naked in the back of a pickup truck, taking the sun, enjoying the breeze and cruising down the highway. It is the best EVER way to travel. The only ones who could see me were the long distance truckers cruising in the passing lane. Some would blow kisses as they passed, and touch their hearts like they were in love, while others waved Jesus on a cross, pointed accusing fingers and disapproving looks. Either way, it was heaven.
When you think about it, there is always something we can do that doesn’t cost much, something that can help us remember that we are not our worries or our pain or our bank accounts. Some simple little things that can bring us back to our core, so we can push that fat lady off our head, at least for a little while, to marvel at the beauty that surrounds us.