So many things to love
We can, if we choose, consciously begin our day thinking of all the people and things to
Love. Imagine a Wednesday that began with looking at your partner, your children (even
if they are far away, there are pictures), your dog, your pet boa constrictor, the sky, the
water that comes out of the shower head, your cup of coffee, the plants on your
windowsill, the teeth you get to brush, the birds singing optimistically, as if they have
nothing better to do than fill up the mornings with music…and just feel the Love and
gratitude. There are so many things to Love! Every minute of every day, we can
fill our minds and hearts with samples of Love.
If we decide to, that is. The choice is always our own.
However, most of us start by lighting up some “electronical” (as my younger son calls
them) for a dose of “reality,” or opening our local paper to be “good citizens.” We
shower, floss, caffeinate, blow-dry, dash to work or school, and by 9:00 a.m. have done
“ten thousand things,” as Lao Tse would say, but not really Loved.
How much better to start the morning with Love than with the daily news! (I promise: the
earth will still rotate on its axis if we remain ignorant of the current price of Apple stock
or details of the latest bombing.) Imagine the feelings of delight that could pop up from
those first “repentant thoughts” of the day. On days I begin with a little blessing-counting
exercise, I am far more likely to assume the lead role in my own happy morning—and
subsequent day. The alternative, a day begun unconsciously (in which I have, sadly,
participated more often than I can count) can frequently involve stressing over lost library
books, bad drivers, painters not showing up for the third day in a row, shoes left behind
(sometimes all the above), or any number of trivialities. My family can tell and will always
respond to my different energy—not in a good way.
Love many things, for therein lies the true strength,
and whosoever loves much performs much,
and what is done in love is done well.
and can accomplish much,
-Vincent Van Gogh
I recently discovered that a sweet friend of mine, Sondra, already does this on a regular
basis. With a smile on her face, she told me, “I had to get really big bonks on the head
before I understood the importance of being grateful. But now I definitely get it, so I
make sure to start out each day with gratitude. Gratitude precedes joy, not the other way
around.” The “bonks” she refers to were the painful loss of her accomplished husband to
brain cancer, and her own serious experience of breast cancer a year later. Her brilliant
focus not only makes her life happier, but the example she is setting for her darling
children and lucky friends is profound. As Arnold Patent, inspiring author and truth
sharer says, “What you focus on expands.” Why not expand Love and gratitude into
every moment we are here?