Sunday, February 22, 2009

Now

Guess what? When it comes right down to it, wherever you go, there you are. Whatever you wind up doing, that's what you've wound up doing. Whatever you are thinking right now, that's what's on your mind. Whatever has happened to you, it has already happened. The important question is, how are you going to handle it? In other words, "Now what?"

Like it or not, this moment is all we really have to work with. Yet we all too easily conduct our lives as if forgetting momentarily that we are here, where we already are, and that we are in what we are already in. In every moment, we find ourselves at the crossroad of here and now. But when the cloud of forgetfulness over where we are not sets in, in that very moment we get lost. "Now what?" becomes a real problem.

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From Wherever You Go There You Are by Jon Kabat-Zinn

I've always been a forward-backward looker. Always looking at the past and preparing for the future. Perhaps that is part of why this has been so difficult for me. I find myself focusing more and more on the present. I don't know what tomorrow will bring, so I'm trying not to focus on it. (I am so accustomed to worrying about it though, that the worry hasn't disappeared, and most days, it is worse. Instead of worrying about the future, I am worrying about right now.)

This shift in consciousness is uncomfortable because it has brought to the forefront the idea that tomorrow isn't promised to any of us. I think that nearly every person has a moment where they come to terms with the reality of their own mortality. And it's in this present moment where we are forced to make changes (or choose to stay stagnant). It is in this moment that I am learning to accept that what has happened has already happened and my dreams for this last year have been altered. I can't do anything about that. All I can do is look at it from a distance and ask "Now what?" I am trying to not be paralyzed by the event. But even in the moments where I am, I must remind myself to recognize the paralysis and then ask "Now what?"

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