On Being Alive. . .

Nobody else can be alive for you. . .   -E.E. Cummings

Oh, I love that one, don’t you?  Words, words, beautiful words.  As simple as these seven words are, the impact is profound.  I read them and a flame ignites from within and I’m confronted with the question. . . what are you going to do about it? 

My first instinct is to think big, dream big, start in on my bucket list. . .Visit NYC with my camera, run a marathon in every state, visit Africa, take the kids to D.C., do a selfie in public, speak publicly, start a Girls on the Run program, take photography classes, write a book. . . oh, there are so many. 

But then, I take a deep breath and I remind myself that being alive isn’t about accolades or accomplishments.  Being alive isn’t grandstanding or being known.  Being alive is simply to be present and truly enjoy what is right in front of me. 

This time of year, this is a task that is especially easy.  Blue skies, warm temperatures, warm sun, and being outside from sun up to sun down makes being alive easy.  We ventured to one of our favorite parks last week.  I’ve found that the older they get (or I get) the more willing I am to say, sure, go ahead.  This time Charlie and Chanelle kicked their flip flops off and waded in the water while we soaked up the sun.

Rocks were skipped across the creek, birds were sought and tadpoles avoided while constant laughter and chatter reverberated throughout the woods.  Meadow slept in her stroller while I sat on a tiny bridge and closed my eyes and soaked up their young innocence along with the sun.

Look Mommy!  A plane!

We made a recent discovery at our arboretum (aka: our favorite place) this weekend.  This feature was recently added. . .

You want to talk being alive?  Try a huge slide running the entire length of a huge hill.  I’ll give you alive. . .

It never ceases to amaze me how much joy can be had while watching the joy of others.  Whether watching the exhilaration of play, the accomplishment of a task, or simply feeling the breath that flows in and out of your lungs. . .truly, joy can be found everywhere. 

And really, while I know that “big moments” are great–trips, dreams, surprises, toys–I’m learning more and more everyday that, at least for me, being alive is found in the simple, little, everyday moments that make up this life.  And truly, what I love most is that being alive. . . well, it’s up to me to do it.

Nobody else can be alive for you. . .   -E.E. Cummings


I also wanted to say thank you for all the very kind comments to my last post.  Oh, if I could reach my arms out and hug all of you who continue to visit here and encourage me with your words.  Thank you, once again, for reminding me that coming here and laying it all out there is more than worth it.  Thank you for being the special community you are.  I am beyond appreciative. 

  • Sassytimes - May 8, 2012 - 12:09 pm

    "Being alive is simply to be present and truly enjoy what is right in front of me."

    I love this, and need it today. Been up all night. ;( 17.5 more years… 😉ReplyCancel

  • lisa - May 8, 2012 - 5:45 pm

    Just adore you and am so thankful for having you here!!! 🙂

    you are so wonderful….ReplyCancel

  • Iris Took - May 12, 2012 - 2:47 pm

    Great quote…..and that slide looks amazing. As usual your kids are adorable.ReplyCancel

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