This weekend I had a wonderful morning with my boys.
A solid two hours of being truly present. We played outside, did some chores, ate a snack and went on a walk.
It was wonderfully blissful.
There really wasn’t anything different about this day compared to any other.
There were still dishes to wash and diapers to change. The boys still wanted to linger and take 20 minutes to walk downstairs.
The difference was me.
I was living in the moment.
My kids responded to it.
And then somehow, I let that blissful feeling slip away. For all of us…
I don’t know if I grew tired of the slow pace or just started to get concerned about being able to fit so many errands into a short window of time before lunch and afternoon naps.
My kids started to feed off of my stress and fought the process of getting out the door…every shoe was a struggle; every buckle was a battle.
But we made it. We went to Nordstrom’s to return a black dress. I had for an event the next day and was returning the one I wasn’t planning to wear.
The clerk asked, “Is there anything wrong with the dress?”
I replied, “No, I just bought two to try on and am returning one of them. Thanks.”
I thought for just a split second that was it odd that she asked this question, but then quickly moved on, hurrying the boys in and out of a few more stores before repeating the loading and unloading process.
The rest of the day went on, just like any other. No more exceedingly blissful moments, but no miserable ones either.
It just felt more like we were going through the motions than enjoying the afternoon and evening.
The next day, as we were all getting ready, I went to put on that black dress.
When to my surprise and astonishment, the dress with the tags on it that didn’t fit was in my closet and the dress I had planned to wear (and cut the tags off of) was at Nordstrom’s…oops!
How many chances did I have to notice?
Three? Maybe four?
Hanging it in my closet, loading it into the bag, handing it to the sales clerk, responding to her question about why I was returning the dress.
Feeling embarrassed that I had been so careless, I called Nordstrom’s to explain the mix-up.
They were as nice as could be, and said it happens ALL the time.
Really?!? Or where they just being polite?
After some searching they determined that the one I had returned in error had been purchased by someone else.
So I improvised on the outfit, but was left wondering…
What else am I missing?
Although disappointing, missing out on an LBD is clearly not a big deal.
Since I missed this after the third and fourth reminders, there must be other more important things I’m not noticing.
The juxtaposition of the blissful morning immediately followed by the mindless trip to the mall, have me wondering…
How I can replicate the feeling of being present, of not feeling too rushed?
Because I know it’s possible.
I know I can do it sometimes, but I’m not sure how it just flows some days. How can I notice when I’m slipping out of it earlier (before the fourth reminder)? What do I do to get back on track when I do slip?
This is why I’m going on a mindfulness journey.
Starting in just 11 days, I’ll be going back to school. Taking a mindfulness-based course that includes help learning to meditate and learning to be open, mindful and present throughout the day.
This taste of bliss has me longing for more mindful moments and searching for tools to help stay there.
We all have those pockets that feel delicious, yet we need to learn how to carry them forward.