A Happy Day

It’s easy to get so caught up in the rat race that we forget why we ever started running, in the first place. This is how my life has been recently. A never-ending stream of appointments and lessons and practices and errands and just … stuff. Stuff on top of stuff on top of stuff, until I’m so mentally and physically exhausted that I feel I can’t handle even one more day. It’s the simplest things in life that make or break us. But those are the things that seem to get tossed aside as soon as we become trapped in this manic dance of schedules and activities and jobs and wants and dreams and desires.

Today, I went out to lunch with my daughter. It was an amazingly, amazingly beautiful day. All the leaves around here have turned, and the sunlight seems to have that special something it gets this time of year, so that it turns into a sort of transparent gold. It catches the edges of everything, no matter how mundane, and dresses it up so that it sparkles with a special kind of beauty. It was crisp and windy, with the leaves blustering across the road in flashes and swirls of color. And the sky … Oh my gosh, but the sky was so blue. I couldn’t look at it without squinting.

And so, I’m driving along … my mind on getting to lunch because I was hungry … but still noticing all the natural beauty around me. My daughter and I aren’t talking, but the radio is on. She is singing in the back seat. Just singing … her voice cutting through the quiet in the car, a little off-key but still beautiful in the way that only children’s voices can be. And I felt … something.

Something deep inside of me seemed to open up and start to glow. It was warm and unexpected and entirely wonderful — kind of like that feeling when you’re a kid, and you’re coming home after school on a cold day, and you open the door to the smell of freshly baked cookies, and you know your mom has been in the kitchen, baking and thinking of you. Just think about that for a moment. Feel it? Yeah. That’s it. That warmth of love and beauty and perfection just welling up inside of you.

In that moment, I realized what it means when people say each day is a gift. I know, I know … We’ve all heard this. We hear it all the time. We’ve heard it so many times that it’s become almost meaningless to us: an empty platitude people say when they can’t think of anything else. But today, in my car … on that street … with the blue sky open above me and my daughter singing in the back seat of my car … I KNEW what this meant. I felt it to the very depths of everything I am. I felt it so much that I wanted to cry from the weight and the happiness of it. I felt how perfect and delicate this moment was, and I wanted to cling to it, even as I knew this was impossible. And yet, I know I will carry this moment in my heart forever. When I am an old lady, I will sit in my chair and close my eyes. And I will smell the fresh bite of fall chill in the air. I will hear the leaves whisking across the road in front of my car. I will see the endless sky, so blue that I think it might swallow me whole. I will hear my daughter’s voice, hear her singing in the back seat of my car.

And I will know: I am blessed.

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9 thoughts on “A Happy Day

    • If I made you think of freshly baked cookies, my job here is done. 😀 Actually, I almost wanted to bake cookies after writing this post. But it was really late at night, so I was saved from all that extra effort: ha, ha.

      Thanks so much for reading and for your kind words. I am happy you liked the post.

  1. Perfectly beautiful post! You described it so vividly I felt like I was there myself. These are the days that make our lives worth living. Bottle it up and keep it with you always! So grateful you had one of those moments. Hope there will be many more 💗

    • Hi, hi!! Thank you, thank you, thank you for reading and for your wonderful and kind comment. I am sorry it has taken me such a long time to write back. I feel awful about that. Things have continued to be nutso around here, and I’ve been trying hard to work on my book. This is a good thing, but it means my poor blog is horribly neglected. Every day, I think to myself, “Self, we need to do a blog post.” And then, I am unable to get back to it until late in the evening, when I am tired. *sigh* I must try to work this out in a better way.

      Anyhow, I am really happy you enjoyed this post. It’s funny, isn’t it, how those moments are so incredibly small … and yet, they pack such a huge punch to the heart and mind. It’s always amazing to be reminded, in such a tangible way, that we are blessed by the very ordinariness of life around us.

      I hope things are going well with you and yours! 😀

      • Great to hear for you and I am glad to hear your book is coming along. I am great! Getting excited for the holidays and seeing some family. I can’t wait to create some more of those moments that fill me up. They sure help me through the mundane lonely times. Hope you are doing well. I miss our little “chats” 😉

  2. nice…. sometimes I can’t shake the feeling of being blessed myself. Usually it involves the smell of sawdust or a dumpster full of building materials… but different strokes for different folks I guess.

    • Hi! Thanks so much for reading, and for your kind comment. I am so happy you enjoyed this post. 😀

      I love that your feelings of being blessed come from building materials and sawdust — sounds like a fantastic combination of hard work and creativity to me! 🙂

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