Planning to Pause
Summer breaks starts today. Tomorrow my husband and baby girl travel to Japan for a week. Mom and I, along with my older daughter and her friend are heading Up North for a short getaway. From one day to the next, life is in motion. It never stops and neither do you. Moment by moment, breath by breath, we move through our life. Sometimes we notice the changes, often we don’t. They are subtle and easy to miss, if you aren’t paying attention.
Walking in the morning watching the world wake up, I gaze at the sun rising and see bunnies hop away. I smell the fresh morning air, and admire the beauty of each wild flower. Somewhere between prayers and wondering thoughts, I stop for a moment of mindfulness, appreciating the pause in my life. This is why I love to walk, outside, early.
Plan your pauses. A pause is a decision to make to choose the moment over reliving the past or anticipating the future. Sometimes I plan pauses, such as a yoga class or sitting out on my deck. Often the pause you take, amid the activities of the day, are the most beneficial. The planned ones are grounding, but the spontaneous ones bring you back to your life and the reflection of the beauty that lies within it at each and every moment.
- Susan J. McFarland
And Then There’s Me
We are hitting a milestone today with the final day of middle school for my eighth grader. She has come far and I am proud of her. I’m also proud of myself, for my growth as a mother and a parent. Today is a day of pause and reflection, in this busy thing we call life. Looking back on her first days of school, not speaking English or knowing her colors, she is now ready for high school. Am I?
Am I ready for more freedom and less parental responsibility? Am I ready for less communication and more holding space? Am I ready to let go, a moment at a time, praying that she will make the best choices? She won’t. She will falter. She will learn. I’ll get anxious and upset. We will disagree. But in the end, I will be there for her, with love, behind the scene.
When she was little we would go to lunch, then ice cream the day school ended. Today, she’s riding a bus home with friends and I won’t see her until tomorrow afternoon. I am no longer her first choice of companionship, but I am her first choice for a mother.
What’s left is me. I’m here now. Taking in the precious moments as they pass by. My younger daughter will be in eighth grade next year. I know what to expect with school. But, she is different then her sister, the trials will test my strength. The journey continues with both of them. Finding me is part of the process.
- Susan J. McFarland
Susan J. McFarland