About, Musings on Life

Taking Dangers One at a Time

Dangers - 1

When I was younger, and first learning how to drive, my mom and I were driving down a narrow two lane road. To be fair, most of the roads in Northeast were narrow, due to how many people were packed into the state. I was driving down this narrow road and a car was coming in the opposite direction and there was a cyclist riding on the road ahead of me. I was clearly overwhelmed and she told me to “slow down and take the dangers one at a time.” She meant do not try to pass the cyclist when the car is also passing you, slow down and wait. The phrase had a broader application than I realized then.

I have been quite intentional with how I build my life. I have started to cut out unnecessary or unimportant in an aim to make progress towards the things I actually care about. I am a person with a lot of ideas. I am nothing if not passionate, almost to a fault, nothing is neutral; Everything has a category good or bad, hence my work to start to see the gray. I have plans. I want to figure out this and that, compile this, get into that, and try something new all at once. This has been the way I have gone through life for quite a while. Now I have time to contemplate and I realize all the many directions I want to go are important, but I also love the feeling of momentum and forward progress. I am slowing down and taking life one thing at a time. I have now one major goal that I am working towards at any given time, and I am learning to let the rest go. No I have not made all of my time efficient, but I have a threshold for what is achievable and doable and I am making progress.

I may be the only one, but I do not think so. Life seems so short. We want to do it all, but in the process we wear ourselves out and feel like we are getting nowhere. Instead of doing more and expending our energy in all directions at once, I am ready to do a little less, to be present more and to focus my energy towards one major goal at a time. I think by allowing myself the time and space, I am open to more ideas. I am able to be more accepting and I am less frazzled. I appreciate not crashing into bed out of sheer exhausting. I appreciate finding what works for me. I appreciate doing it my way. In our society of busy, I am taking it slow. I am finding myself and I am doing less. In this way, I am finding my life to be life giving and worthwhile. I am remembering more, I am more present in my interactions and relationships. I am able to care. I noticed this concretely in regards to cooking. When I slow down and take my time, prep ingredients and do not try to rush, I enjoy the process. I make less mistakes. I do not get injured as frequently. I am able to be in the task rather than achieving the result. I am there for the process not the product. It might be messy, it might not look the way it is supposed to, but it is true. Life may be short, and it can be hard to come to terms with the fact that we cannot do it all. We cannot read all the books, or watch all shows or do all the things. With this in mind, how do we want to live? Do we want to rush and try to do it all? Or do we choose to slow down and be present for what we do? To remember that this moment matters, and it is all we know we will have. When we try to do it all we miss the blessing that is now, that is this moment, that is life. A friend of mine always tells me this is life, you’re doing it now. Life does not start when we achieve X or become Y. Life is now and I am choosing not to miss it.

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