I don’t slow down very often.
I’m a racer.
I’m not contemplative, I don’t deeply breathe in the sunshine on a regular basis.
I am not a regular with my meditation app.
I have a perpetually growing To Do list.
I forget to email people back.
I’m moving. I’m running. I’m planning. I’m organizing. I’m constantly in motion.
Then, at the end of the day… there is not slow progression or routine that lulls me to sleep.
Basically, I go. Then, I drop.
And then I do it again.
This, apparently, is the way I’ve chosen to live my life.
Truth be told, I think it’s a subtle cross between learned behavior and my own choice. As it turns out I come from a long line of kinetic women who go, go, go… so
blaming looking to them for the why I am the way I am seems like the easiest thing to do.
Today has been a welcomed change, one that I will be partaking in more frequently during the coming year.
It’s my birthday today and Craig and I went for a walk at a park.
The trees, oh, the trees… they provide the absolute perfect canopy. They let in just enough light, but protected us from the warm Ohio mid-day sunshine. We walked quietly. I breathed IN and OUT, IN and OUT… in silence with my best friend. (Is there anything better than the easy quiet between two souls? I think not.)
I listened to the leaves rustling.
I noticed the acorns dropping.
I was present and it was good.
It’s funny, in these moments when I s-l-o-w it down, I always think of my Mom. Even in death, I feel like she’s teaching me things.
“Kylee, you do to much. Slow down.”
“Kylee, you’re going to quickly. Slow.it.down.”
“Kylee. Stop rushing.”
These were the anthems of my childhood and I can still hear them today.
When I slow down, I can better connect to the world around me, to my sweet family, to my friends, to my life, to God… to myself.
As my best friend and I walked through the forested park, I couldn’t help but be thankful for the lessons that each trip around the sun brings.
In the past year, I’ve learned the importance of saying no. (As it appears, life goes on.)
In the past year, I’ve learned to be more present… am I doing it well? All of the time? No, but I’m doing my best. And I can see a difference in my family.
In the past year, I’ve learned that I don’t have to do it all.
I can just do me. I can just be me.
So, for the next 365 days I think I’m going to keep going and keep slowing.
My soul needs the quiet, the thoughtfulness and the mindfulness.
I need equal parts, “MOVE IT!” and “SLOW DOWN!”
I am so very thankful today for the amazing collection of individuals who have crossed my path throughout my 38 years. This bouquet of friends and family from over the years has left me feeling full and has shaped who I am. From each individual, I have learned something.
I’ve felt the pain and heartache of others.
I’ve listened to jokes that made me laugh so hard my stomach hurt.
I’ve learned when to be quiet. And hold space.
I’ve been so moved by others that my life will never, ever be the same.
When we were younger and would talk about what we wanted to be when we grew up, I remember telling Craig, “I just want to have good relationships… I want people to know they matter…”
We both laughed. I mean, “good relationships” totally pays the bills.
But truthfully? What I do doesn’t even compare to what I have in terms of my collection of people.
I am so grateful that I’ve had this blog, and coaching… and life experiences that have connected me. Have I been the best friend? No. Do I forget the birthdays of my nephews and nieces? Yes. Have I always been present? No.
But… there’s always a connection.
My life is composed of incredible people and for that I am grateful.
Shirley taught me that life is shorter than one might expect.
I’ve said so many times that my life has two very clear parts: before she died and after. And while the after once seemed searingly painful, today I’m thankful that I’ve grown throughout this process.
Everyone has pain. Everyone has loss.
And while I lost my Mom, I gained so much, too.
In the end, all we have left are our relationships.
All we have is the impact that we leave on others and that which they leave on us.
Today, on my birthday, I am so grateful that I could slow down, feel the blanket of love from others and recognize that I am who I am because of all that people have shared with me.
Thank you, dear friends.
Special thanks to the peeps who live with me day in and day out. The ones who hear me scream. The ones who see the real me. I hope and pray that you never start blogs…