They are happening all around us but we are too “busy” to notice
I could have been in the Olympics. Oh I know what you’re thinking; scanning my muffin-topped physique, but this girl has got some serious track and field training behind her. I am a gold winner at racing through endless lists of expectations I don’t know how to meet, chasing dreams I let others set for me and leaping toward hyperbolic outcomes. My morning workout consists of dashing between “what ifs”, “should haves” and “how will I evers”, before pole vaulting to land firmly on a cushion of self-doubt.
I had to fly down south recently. The first leg of my trip was a breeze and so in the connecting airport, in cocky confidence I decided to lounge over coffee and pressing Facebook notifications as I waited for my next flight.
An hour later, having successfully learned How to Make 3 Easy Breakfasts in a Mug…and being somewhat horrified by 16 Strange Celebrity Habits, I gathered my things and headed to catch my next plane, only to discover that the gate I needed wasn’t in this section of the airport at all but about 9.7 miles in the other direction (10 Worst Hyperboles Used by Bloggers…) and so with only minutes to go I flew down the escalator, luggage airborne, and began my own 500 meter aerial dash.
Swooping past the food court and its 11 dollar pretzels, my inner voice geared up to warp speed. I can’t believe I’m going to miss my flight and lose the hotel money. I’m going to miss my meeting and my reputation will be ruined. I’m usually so responsible, I should have known better…
As the familiar security queue came in sight I began to peel off my jacket, not once breaking my stride and shucking off my shoes like a seasoned pole dancer I floated through the arch of x-ray indignity before making a last dash to the boarding counter when I suddenly I skid to a halt behind a line of passengers frozen in front of me. The flight had been delayed due to mechanical problems. The flight crew had disembarked and no one knew when we would be on our way. And then and only then, did I Stop. Stop worrying about what time I might reach my destination or whether it would have made a difference had I not ordered that second latte. And I paused to:
At the dozens of other passengers in the same position and the frazzled airline staff forcing smiles through bitten lips while fielding their complaints. And I allowed myself to:
To the stories happening all around me- like the businessman up ahead shouting into his earpiece, “But what about you, Tom? How did your interview go? Wow Congratulations, that’s huge! Good for you, you deserve it!” Or the two women passing beside me, leaning on each other for support, “Oh yes, thank-you. Do you really think we might find a seat? It’s true, I’ve been walking all day.” And the couple of teenagers behind me, slumped against the wall, laughing at their smartphone screen, limbs entangled as only young love can.
When we teach kids to cross the street we don’t let them run but tell them to Stop. Look and Listen. Because it’s not about crossing the finish line but relishing the moments that matter right here, right now. They are happening all around us. I was just too “busy” to notice.
But when I did, panic left, frustration melted and joy returned.
About the author:Maia Aziz P.S.W., C.L.Y.L. writes and speaks on living a life of love and laughter. President-Elect of the Association for Applied and Therapeutic Humor (AATH), Maia hosts a weekly talk radio show Morning Moments with Maia…Conversations of Love and Laughter, Sundays at 9am EST on blogtalkradio where she shares conversations with an eclectic lineup of guests who live their lives with positive intention. www.withloveandlaughter.ca