Sunday, April 7, 2013

From Buzzing to Being

During a recent conversation with a friend, my ears perked up to an interesting phrase, "being still". This friend, who is expecting her first little one, was referring to the act of intentionally not doing anything. Not plopping on the couch to stare at a TV, not collapsing into bed from sheer exhaustion (though I know she'll soon have that experience), and not even sitting at the breakfast table sipping coffee. She referred to full-on sitting in silence just to sit in silence.  The way she described stillness made me long for the feeling. As I flew around my house this morning (packing for a "quick" trip to Nana's that filled my entire vehicle with "necessities"), I found my mind and body tackling dozens of projects at once. Multitasking. The story of my life. So when was the last time I was still?  On the drive to Nana's, approximately two hours, I tried to conjure the memory of the last time I was still. Just to listen to the wind. To hear my own thoughts. To breathe. Certainly not in the last six months, thanks to my active little girl. And not while I was pregnant...too much to get done, to think about, to worry about. Before that I was in grad school and working. Maybe before that?? I really didn't know.  And that bothered me.

In the last few minutes of the drive, a whispered memory brought my thoughts back to stillness. I was on a mountain. Looking at the small details of the expansive world below. Feeling the unobstructed breeze on my face. Soaking up rays of unadulterated sunshine.  Hearing nothing but the gentle sounds of nature, the comforting voice of the creator, and my own rhythm.  The memory, and the experience, were so peaceful.  And finding myself drift back to that place, whenever it was, reassured me that 1) I am capable of stillness in the right circumstances and 2) Stillness, though sometimes a foreign concept, is within reach.

Blue Ridge : My Soul
The return of spring weather and the desire to recapture my pre-baby body has me itching to get back to the mountains. Let's go for a hike, run from the snakes, smell the rhododendrons, photograph pieces of nature's majesty, breathe fresh air, forget the burden of daily life, listen to God, dream of possibilities, be grateful for what we have in our lives, and be still.

I can't wait. I hope to teach my daughter the wonder of taking time to be still. Although, that isn't likely in the foreseeable future.  She spends her days working on rolling around the room, pulling herself up on furniture, army crawling, jumping, and squirming. She's not yet six months.  But, maybe someday.  One can dream.