When We Allow Life to Change Us

 

No man ever steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and he’s not the same man.  —Heraclitus

Anyone who thinks that life is too routine and that hardly anything changes has gotten himself into a rut. We can allow ourselves to be numbed by our daily routines, bored with the predictability of our days, and dwell on the many things we don’t have or we’d like to have.

Instead, though, we can notice the richness of each day as we move through it. For me, there are a great many things that pique my attention or give me joy. When I get up early in the morning, I will notice the stillness that rests in the house; somehow that day’s silence has its own soothing quality. Or on my walk, I’ll notice a new blossom on my lemon tree; a walker who has an English mastiff who’s decided to stop and greet me; or an armadillo that scampers blindly to find his breakfast.

Or I may scan the newspaper, noting how the stories seem to lean from one side to the other. Or how my breakfast cereal seems especially tasty that morning. Or note that it must be time to find another fruit for my cereal, since the Sugar Kiss melons are drifting out of season.

At times I’ll appreciate that in spite of my 71-year-old stiffness, I seem to be moving with some ease on a particular morning. Or my husband makes me laugh with a silly joke.

On certain days I’m especially blessed when I notice that I have some new insights that I’m challenged to analyze, accept or reject. That in spite of the pleasure I experience as I reflect on this great country, I am saddened by all who suffer and cause suffering.

But I truly believe that each day I awaken, when I thank G-d for restoring my soul that morning, I am a different person, hopefully a wiser person, with more gratitude and humility. And my life, that particular day is a brand-new day unlike any other.

The day is new, and I am new.

[photo from Unsplash.com]

Published in Group Writing
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  1. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Life is like with coffee made from freshroasted beans.  If you want consistent, predictable coffee, you’ll have to settle for predictable mediocrity. If you want the best, it’ll not be the best every day, but it will be full of surprises.  (I was thinking about that just a few minutes ago, as I was trying out a different roast that our neighbors down the road gave me to try. They have a roadside farm stand and also do some roasting to order).  

    • #1
  2. She Reagan
    She
    @She

    Susan Quinn: The day is new, and I am new.

    So very true.  Most days, I walk a couple of miles, just on my country roads, and down along the side of the creek.  I call it the “Headwaters of the Mississippi” (please don’t burst my bubble, those of you who insist on a strict interpretation of the “headwaters” term), because a spring bubbles out of the ground on my property, feeds into a tiny creek that runs across the bottom of it, which feeds into Buffalo Creek, which feeds into Wheeling Creek, which feeds into the Ohio River, which …. you get the idea.

    Every day, it’s different.  Sunny, cloudy; fast-moving, slow-moving; clear, muddy; full, or almost dry.  Some days there are kingfisher and heron.  Others, ducks and Canada geese.  Snapping turtles.  Beaver.  Mink. Muskrat.  I never know, when I set out, what–or who–I’ll see. And there are the seasonal changes too: sometimes, ice, or a changing landscape of wildflowers, trees and bushes as the year moves along.

    So it’s the same walk, every day, but it’s a different walk every day.  And it never fails to delight me.  That’s the one thing that does stay the same.

    Great QOTD post, @susanquinn,  thanks.

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    • #2
  3. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    She (View Comment):
    So it’s the same walk, every day, but it’s a different walk every day.  And it never fails to delight me.  That’s the one thing that does stay the same.

    Thanks, @she. The simplest things can also delight us the most! I love the kingfisher because he often chatters as he flies–who else does that?

    • #3
  4. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    Today as we were leaving Publix and I was taking my empty shopping cart to the designated slot, another woman was about to do the same. As I was walking back to our car, she was pushing her cart past me and said, “I just love your hair!” And I said, “I love yours too!” (She was a black woman with very short curly hair.) She responded, “But mine is mostly gray underneath.” And I replied, “And mine is newly grown after chemo.” She hesitated, and then I said, “And I love the colors, too!” We both laughed.

    It was a simple exchange of shared delight. It’s just the kind of thing that makes my day.

    • #4
  5. Rodin Member
    Rodin
    @Rodin

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    Today as we were leaving Publix and I was taking my empty shopping cart to the designated slot, another woman was about to do the same. As I was walking back to our car, she was pushing her cart past me and said, “I just love your hair!” And I said, “I love yours too!” (She was a black woman with very short curly hair.) She responded, “But mine is mostly gray underneath.” And I replied, “And mine is newly grown after chemo.” She hesitated, and then I said, “And I love the colors, too!” We both laughed.

    It was a simple exchange of shared delight. It’s just the kind of thing that makes my day.

    The strangest thing is that strangers can meet and momentarily and impermanently connect on a very deep level while persons with whom we assume we have a lasting and deep connection could in fact be strangers. (Thought after watching a 20/20 episode about a man who was convicted of strangulation murders 50 years ago but only recently identified through DNA matching and who successfully passed as a loving husband and father.)

    • #5
  6. Douglas Pratt Coolidge
    Douglas Pratt
    @DouglasPratt

    Thanks for sharing, Susan. I needed the smile.

    • #6