I’m outdoors, and noticing windows…of time. It’s a windy, rainy, March morning with occasional rainbows. Each time I reach for my phone to take a photo, the light changes so quickly that I miss some of the brightly illuminated moments. The wet madrone bark is still orange, but not glowing, the full arc of rainbow has faded to not be picture-worthy anymore. I could stuff my phone back in my pocket with a grumble, or I could keep it in my hand, like a weapon, determined to nail the next opportunity. Or…. I could calmly think, that moment is past, there will be another, and another. I’m fortunate that my life is filled with amazing sights, and not all of them will be captured to share. I choose to notice and collect fleeting delights.
Yesterday, I attended a celebration of life for a friend who also collected beauty and joy. On display were her whimsical jewelry, her cards with insightful quotes in calligraphy, art supplies for guests to dabble in creativity, which was such a hallmark of how she spent her time. And I realize now that my bond with my friend was our way of seeing the world with delight. We would take a walk through an ordinary neighborhood and remark on architectural design that pleased us, on the curl of a rose petal, on the peek of a crocus bud, the audacity of a vine to take over a carport. No need to take photos, the sharing happened as we pointed out our observations to each other.
On my walk this morning, I notice the little, white, two-inch-high flowers on the hillside meadow. There are several, but the very first one I see is an occasion: it’s the very first one of this season. I frame it in the camera and collect it to share because it is a windowed experience. I know there are books and websites with pictures of this same variety of flower, but they do not convey this moment. Sometimes I collect a little “a-ha” by composing a haiku. Today, it’s windows.
Huh. Not all windows show up at first as beauty or delight. In response to my non-availability to go to the nursery this afternoon, my partner says, “It’s a choice.” It arrives to me like a disapproving jab, expressing his dissatisfaction with my lifestyle, his wishing I didn’t fill my afternoon with classes. My heart sinks a bit, and even lower when, in his hurry to be on time, he grabs his gym bag and goes out the door without a hug. My mind reaches for a cookie for a moment. Fortunately, there’s no cookie readily available and I have time to let that moment slip by and find, in the next moment, that I am calm, aware of all the precious moments I’ve enjoyed in this relationship. Probably, there will be more. I just want to be tuned in and able to feel the available joy when the precious moments show up. This, too, is a precious moment of insight. I may live my life with equanimity, coupled with child-like wonder, as much as I allow myself to.