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Catch Those Fleeting Moments

DSCN5926 Barrel Cactus Bloom 2018-04

Small Barrel Cactus in Bloom. Kathleen Dixon (c) 2018

It’s so easy to miss those fleeting moments that cannot be retrieved. The small, still, memorable moments of joy. I’ve let so many slip away over the years… simply by allowing less important things to take priority.

Today, I make an effort to participate in those fleeting moments.

For example, about 10 days ago, I was preparing for an intense, four day motivation and education training. Planning and packing, checking lists… you know, getting ready to focus all my energy on this event I signed up for, that I wanted to participate in. And sometime during the planning and the packing, I heard those words. Fleeting Moments.

I immediately stopped what I was doing and I sent my daughter a text. My children are grown. My grandchildren are not. For the next twenty minutes, my husband and I video-chatted with our youngest grand-daughter. She is almost four. She is happy when she sees us. She smiles and giggles and shares her thoughts. She has grown from a toddler into a little girl in the past few months. And we are there for that. It was joy. We brought joy to her and she unknowingly returned it ten-fold.

This post was prompted by the accompanying photo. I tend to stuff my days with tasks, activity. I usually hold a one hour meeting every morning with myself and then I hit the ground running. I fall into tunnel-vision: how much can I get done today? Usually, too, I do a lot of busy work. And I forget to check in with my spouse. AND… sometimes, I put off his requests in favor of my busywork… stuff that could wait, even for the few minutes he wants to tell me something, or show me something.

I fight the voice inside me that says, “In a minute, I’m RIGHT in the middle of task number 187.”

Today, he called through the bedroom window. Asked me if I ‘d seen the barrel cactus this morning. And that voice spoke up… however, today I made a choice. I told the voice that we had five minutes, that the task I had just begun wasn’t going anywhere and that he was more important than gathering the week’s account balances.

You see, I HAD seen the cactus earlier this morning. It has some small, fuzzy, white fluff growing on it and I’d made a mental note to ask him about it. (My mental notes are also fleeting, by the way). I stopped what I was doing and I went outside to look at the cactus, to ask him about those fuzzy white puffs. And on that cactus I’d seen only an hour before was this delicate, hot pink bloom. As you can see, it is a spectacular little flower. It will only last a day or two, and it won’t bloom again for a long time.

I would have missed that bloom and my husband’s attempt to share it with me, if I’d listened to that little voice.

I am certainly grateful to know – at least for today – where my real priorities lie, and that the fleeting moments are the ones that make my life one worth living.