Sunday, August 12, 2018

Gratitude for a Beautiful Sunday Morning

Too often many of us focus on the trials, tribulations, challenges, frustrations, annoyances, losses, heartbreaks and regrets we've experienced or the wants, wishes, desires, dreams, hopes, aspirations, and what the future will bring rather than enjoying the here and now. As I've written previously, it took me years of Al-Anon meetings to accept that I cannot change the past and have no control over the future. These are the things I cannot change. The only thing over which I have absolute control is my attitude and response to things beyond my control. It was also through Al-Anon, my yoga practice, and my personal spiritual journey that I've been able to re-boot my natural state of fear and focus on the negative or what-ifs. 

The process of recalibrating my attitude was lengthy and required introspection, intention, and the desire to live a life of peacefulness, serenity, happiness, contentment, gratitude and appreciation for what is. That is not to imply that every moment is pleasurable, happy, easy or free of frustration, anger or sadness. However, those moments are fleeting now.

At this moment I am sitting on our porch sipping coffee surrounded by the beauty of our hardscrabble landscape that we've struggled over the past 13 years to create our own version of Eden.  The calming fountain on the deck gurgles, hummingbirds sip nectar from the trumpet vines dangling from the pergola, wisteria shades the south screens, a cardinal nibbles at one of the bird feeders, and the cats laze about purring. For me this is a glorious way to enjoy an early Sunday morning. 

Oddly enough we are filled with gratitude that our area in northwestern Virginia has not recovered from the housing crisis to the extent that the vacant house on the adjacent lot to the east remains vacant and the lot to the north remains unsold. With the road to the east leading to a holler and a farm to the south, we are blessed with a quiet and solitude that I never would have imagined I could appreciate when I was living in Plano, Texas or Taipei, Taiwan or Hong Kong. There is something so life affirming and spiritual about living in the country surrounded by nature - even if some of the varmints eat my plants and invade the porch for cat food after dark.

I am content to sit here, listen to the fountain and enjoy the luxury of just being.

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