Maybe it’s the rush that is the season, but lately, I’m more and more reminded of the present that is the present.
A friend recently commented that her goal for 2018 was to be wherever her feet were – to be grounded in the now – looking nither forward or back but only to this ‘perfect’ moment – free from the boundaries and ultimate limitations inherent with the others.
As expected, it got me thinking about the present and how wisely (or not) we spend our moments. I’ll readily admit that I love talking about the past. Not in the sense that I speak of it with regret or sorrow, but as part of the larger story – perhaps the place we began, though it might not have appeared so at the time.
The stories are what define us, help us to grow, and in sharing those, we allow others a part of us that exists (like the present) beyond the grasp of past or future. In my humble opinion, there is no relationship nor circumstance that cannot be made better by four simple words – tell me a story. In the sharing, the present becomes greater than the depth of a moment, a season, a lifetime.
Of times I spent with my daddy, the gift of being present rewarded me with amazing treasures – parts of him. There were stories I had heard before, but others, I had not. The same is true of my visits with mama. From an ordinary conversation about fishing comes a story I didn’t know.
When she was pregnant with me, she couldn’t work in her daddy’s cafe. Yet, there were days when he needed fish for the restaurant and he took her with him. That part of the story is sweet enough, but there is another part. Because she was expecting, there were times when she grew nauseous or tired. He carried a blanket with him so that she could nap in the bottom of the boat while he fished.
I love that story……a piece of my grandfather who died a month before I was born. A piece of my mother, and a piece of me.
And now, in another way, perhaps a piece of you too.
I never tire the revelation, of the insight into all that matters. When faced with a grieving friend, the simple words, ‘tell me a story about her’ (or him) is enough to alter perspective, allowing us a shared place of memory, intimacy, solace and connection.
In our stories, we are at once a hero and immortal. Where the story remains, so our name, repeated long past the expanse of either past or future.
So, tell me………
when last I dreamed
I lay awake
and wandered unto home
the safe and sweet
once was you
tell me now
some other time
of who you are
you knew my name
before I thought
. . .