I looked up from the book I was reading at the wall in front of me and the shelves flanking my left and right. Thousands and thousands of books surrounded me, innumerable words and ideas. The thought occurred to me, “What do I really have to say?”
I gazed down at the book I was holding and remembered the author passed away recently. Contained in the pages were words she decided had to be said, and now I’m left with her story, though her life ended.
If this were my last blog post, and this three and a half year streak of weekly writings were to end abruptly, and all that was left were these last words, what would I want you to know?
What would serve as the best introduction to the rest of everything I’ve penned these last few years? It’s an interesting thought experiment, and as I sit here and write, dozens of thoughts are going through my mind.
Here it goes...
Everything in my life is more complicated than I used to think and currently think, good and bad, and as I learn this to be more and more true, I’m driven to deeper levels of humility, awe, and love.
I am one among billions of people to have existed over millions of years. To even stand in my driveway now as a storm rolls in and ponder not only the mechanics of what’s happening in nature but the meaning of everything is a miracle in and of itself.
Just choose to notice—that’s my only advice.
See that it’s more complicated than you ever imagined—that’s my only conclusion.
It changes a typical day to the best day ever, the mundane to the magnificent. I see Lacie next to me drinking Gatorade and eating Cheezits on our front porch now as it rains, and it’s one of the most beautiful events of my life when I’m in this mindset.
When you start seeing the world this way, it’s hard to unsee it. Inevitably, circumstances will still try to cloud your vision. Our failures and struggles will try to blind our eyes with lids of cynicism and doubt.
But you can’t unsee it. Just like Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr. said, “A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.”
My enemy becomes a hurt child who was never allowed to grow up. To understand all is to forgive all. You never lose, only learn. Everything shifts when there’s always something beautiful to be seen, when you lead with humility, awe, and love.
Just start today, and choose to notice.