Reflect (verb) | think deeply or carefully about.
Gratitude (noun) | the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.
I am the reflecting type.
If you’ve been following my blog for some time then that statement will come as no surprise to you.
I recently came upon a segment from Thoreau’s Walden, which I finally read in its entirety at the beginning of last year.
The piece spoke deeply to me about existence in the present.
There were times I could not afford to sacrifice the bloom of the present moment to any work, whether of the head or hands. I love of broad margin to my life. …I sat in my doorway from sunrise till noon, rapt in a revery, amidst the pines and hickories and sumachs, in undisturbed solitude and stillness, while the birds sing around or flitted noiseless through the house, until by the sun falling in at my west window, or the noise of some traveller’s wagon on the distant highway, I was reminded of the lapse of time. I grew in those seasons like corn in the night, and they were far better than any work of the hands would have been. They were not time subtracted from my life, but so much over and above my usual allowance.
One of the ways to remain in this present moment is to practice gratitude.
I am not always good at taking the moments to recognize all that I am grateful for.
On Tuesday morning as I was preparing to leave for yoga, there was a man exiting my driveway… carrying my push lawnmower to his truck. He managed to steal it and speed off before I could catch his tag number. I know enough about the truck and plates that I would recognize it, but I assume that he may be smart enough not to poop in the yard that feeds him (so I doubt he lives close by). While I did have a hard time being fully present during yoga, it really did help me calm down and come to a place of acceptance. My being upset about a situation that couldn’t be changed was only hurting me. So instead, I decided to focus on what three aspects surrounding it I was grateful about. I documented it on my Instagram story and listed them:
- I was grateful that my son had just mowed the yard two days before so that I didn’t have to move mower buying to the top of my to-do list.
- I was grateful that replacing the mower is not a financial burden for us.
- I was grateful that he chose to steal something outside of my garage door rather than trying to enter the home and finding that somebody was indeed home (I park in my garage so I’m assuming he thought the house was empty).
Reframing it put me in a better place.
But I also wanted to share my gratitude for all of you.
There was an outpouring of love after I posted Monday about the loss of our dog. I have not even been able to respond to all of the heartfelt comments that you have left. I also shared the post to my private Facebook page, which I don’t always do since I have a dedicated blog Facebook page where I share my posts and occasionally other posts that I’ve enjoyed.
The response that I received from everyone was overwhelming.
But it isn’t just in those moments that I feel gratitude for each and every one of you. It’s in those moments like where I shared about my camera dilemmas photographing the Inside of Versailles and those who had advice to share, did so, even finding me on Twitter to share an article!
It’s in moments of every day interaction.
So many of you who take time out of your to day to share words with me. So many of you who take time out of your day to read my words.
It makes my soul so uplifted.
While I didn’t make it to Keukenhof when in Amsterdam (time was scarce and I didn’t think the teens would enjoy it quite as much as me.), I did take time to photograph the tulips displayed in the Museumplein.
I’ve read that tulips symbolize perfect love.
Some claim that different colors symbolize other things.
Whatever the case, they rank up there as some of my favorite flowers.
Flowers are often given as tokens of appreciation. So I hope you’ll accept these virtual flowers as a symbol of my gratitude for the time that you take out of your lives to pour blessings into mine.
Let your light shine!