On Anticipation


On anticipation

It was so predictable at my house growing up…

Whatever national holiday or camping or day trip that was coming would be eagerly anticipated. Mom would make lists of lists – what to shop for, what to pack, what to turn off while we were gone, and who to contact in the event of emergency. The planning phase was the “fun” part.

Then, sure as a 1-hr delay when you wanted a snow-day, there’d be disappointment. We’d arrive, do whatever was needed to check in, and mom would start planning for the return trip. Often we’d leave the campground early on Sunday so she’d have time to unpack and do laundry before work the next day.

The Christmas tree would go up… not on Black Friday… but on the evening of Thanksgiving as soon as the roasting pan was dried and put away. Anyhow, there wouldn’t be time on Friday because of all the deal-shopping. Back then the stores didn’t open until 6:00 am, so we’d be up at 5:00 to be the first in line. But just as dependably, the tree was lucky to stay through Christmas morning.

Even now I don’t talk about “Thursday” or “Wednesday”… just “nearly Friday” and “almost nearly Friday.”

What about the part where we’re present in the actual moment we’ve been waiting for?

Yesterday was a celebratory experience – the fourth York Book Expo (and fifth for Year of the Book) – and with a combination of hindsight and foresight 20/20 all the moving parts came together with minimal hiccups. The day was one in which… as rarely experienced… I dropped into each moment mindfully.

For perhaps the first time at such a public event, I was able to be fully present throughout every conversation. I didn’t rush myself or feel anxiety over non-controllable elements. The reunion hugs were sweeter and the discussions deeper. It was a sensation I could get used to.  

This is not to say that the event was without disappointment. It would have been great to have more foot traffic, and enough wi-fi connections for everybody, and coffee available earlier. But the magic was still present. We were present.

Of course it was predicated by intense planning, which is still what I view as the “fun” part. (No doubt because I’m a mindfulness novice.) Part of me now wonders if this sensation is duplicatable. Will various other aspects of my days, months, and years bring more joy if I practice such consciousness and attentiveness?

And if so, would this behavior on my part affect those around me more positively?

As the Universe’s answer, a poem just arrived in email from author Paul Gorman, known poetically as “Wren” (excerpted below):

I am compassion
so will not get mad
I have no fear
but can still be sad

I am complete
love comes from within
all time and creation
about to begin

does that make sense
that life starts here
there is no offense
to create anger or fear?

then you haven’t driven
my daily commute
reckless devils
always along my route

you should see at work
the laziness and greed
and on the computer
deception and need

or in the news
playing violent feeds
our Garden of Eden
growing lots of weeds

this week it will change
   when you use your power
you’ll love when you see
   each weed is a flower

Yes, each weed is a flower. (Never mind that I’m lousy with plants.) It’s a beginning.

Wishing you a week filled with happiness and anticipation AND mindful magic in more moments!
Cheers, Demi

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