Yesterday at sunset, as I swam around at the beach – diving under waves and viewing the deep golden sun from beneath the rippling water – I realized that I too often fall in love with ideas.
In other words, I’m always looking forward to the next thing instead of trying to focus on being completely conscious of each moment’s presence.
And while I do have a lot of fun adventures coming up, last night I couldn’t’ help but take a moment to be grateful for the right now. Wrapped in my towel as I walked the length of the beach, I was so content and mindful about the joys of those present moments.
The same thing happened while I was surfing this morning at sunrise. We got out in the water when it was dark and cold and were welcomed by the rising sun behind the buildings back on shore. Looking ahead, the skies were light pink and gray and the water was rippling and just wonderful. It would have been a sin for my mind to have been elsewhere during those perfect moments.
Falling in love with the idea of something can be great. It leads to excitement and hope. But it can also often times be overly romanticized in its refusal to acknowledge the possible setbacks of reality.
While reality definitely deals its hand of challenges and times that aren’t always so rosy, there is something to be said about appreciating what you have right in front of you and not always turning to that sentiment that tomorrow/next week/next year will be better than now.
And as much as I am looking forward to the warm waters of Mazatlan in a week or the pleasant feeling of wandering around Paris and Toulouse in a month, I must remember to be receptive to the joys in these very moments at home.
The joy of spending time with family. The joy of cultivating both new and old friendships. The joy of warm coffee and a hot shower after surfing and then crawling into bed and writing.
I must realize that “the idea of” is just a romanticized version of “the here and now,” and it all comes down to a matter of perspective.
We only ever get a certain number of “tomorrows,” after all.