One of my sisters, the one who has always been an avid reader, used to subscribe to quite a few monthly magazines; the home decor and women’s lifestyle type in particular. When done with the current issues she would thoughtfully provide me with an ongoing supply. I regarded them as a precious commodity, as a moment for silent retreat, providing a mental transport to a more colorful, even glamorous, lifestyle.
As a young wife and mom there was always the usual mountain of laundry, the budget friendly recipes to master, the routine household maintenance to attend to and it was never ever all done. This was the usual housewifery that occupied the day to day of this twenty-something year old back then. During those years I felt morally obligated to finish all the daily responsibilities before I’d allow myself to enjoy the wonders to be found in the glossy pages of Better Homes and Gardens, Country Living, Victoria magazine and such. Oh the perceived sense of luxury while spending a stolen hour gazing at the designer home layouts, dream vacations, and dinner parties featured on those pages.
Ah, that was then. I rarely do read any magazines these days and like everyone else prefer to scroll through apps and pages on my iPhone more than to flip through beautiful layouts on glossy paper. Just the same, putting the pause button on something I’d rather enjoy “now” until a nagging responsibility has been accomplished is totally an ingrained tendency of mine.
While checking emails several weeks ago I saw a message from a friend who’s been an extra special encourager to me especially in this year of continuously unexpected events. Knowing that the content would most likely be soul-enriching, as per my usual, I chose to save it until I’d accomplished some pressing bit of business that needed immediate attention. A few days passed, and then a few weeks more and I forgot to go back to the email. Like in years before I was attempting to finish my vegetables before moving on to dessert. But an inbox is not as visibly eye catching as a colorful magazine thoughtfully positioned on one’s coffee table. And all too often a growing inbox can be known to bury real treasure.
What I came to discover some weeks and weeks later was a (missed) opportunity that had been, at the time, only a click away. I’m not going to preach here about the woulda, coulda, shoulda of it all though mentally I’ve already done it. Instead I’ve decided to re-think this long held mindset that has served me well for many years. I’ve decided, generally speaking, that a little impulsivity, a bit more spontaneity, perhaps seizing the moment instead of deferring the enjoyment might serve me well in this season. I’ll never be someone who jumps off a cliff or hastily throws caution to the wind. Or will I? I smile as I think about baby steps towards the treasures of the present moment. The other stuff, most definitely, can wait.