Noticing awe


A huge part of being a writer is awareness. Not necessarily of self, though that helps, but of awe inspiring things that go unnoticed to most. We're so busy, as a people and a society, that we hurry through our days and errands and hours and meetings and gatherings that often we don't hear what people are saying - or aren't saying - and we miss the glory of what surrounds us. The silly shapes of the clouds, the perfect climbing tree, the way someone winces when they think no one is looking, or the tender moment when a young man gently touches his mother's arm in the checkout line at the grocery store, and the look they share before moving forward. 

For me, it's a win win. I need to slow down and notice things to write, but then it becomes a practice and noticing, slowing down my mind and feet, ends up enhancing my daily life in ways that remind me of childhood. 

Giving myself the freedom to spend moments in awe, to allow my heart to expand and swell with wonder, makes me think back to those moments on walks with my children when they were toddlers and we would gently encourage them to keep moving, otherwise we'd stay in the same place for hours watching ants or picking dandelions (which we often did).

Now, they're the ones racing ahead as I lollygag on walks, taking pictures and daydreaming. 

Some of the things my jaw drops in awe over make it into a notebook, or more likely an Instagram post, but often they sit somewhere around my rib cage in a warm glow, waiting to be tapped into when I need a bit of warmth when the world feels cold, callous, and foreign. These small moments remind me of our shared humanity, but also of the natural world which will continue on well after my time on earth is over. The details of earth humble me, ground me, and I'm regularly overcome with awe.

Do you stop and smell the roses? Do stop in your tracks and marvel at nature? Do you notice details as you move through the day? Do you feel awe regularly? If your answer is no to any of these questions, what's stopping you?

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