Friday, June 1, 2012

Living in the Now

Today is June 4th and I am putting on socks because my feet are cold.  It's summer in Berkeley and while the sun is shining and the birds are singing, there have been strong winds today and the temp has dropped to the high 50's this evening.

This might not seem like a big deal to you, but after living in New York for the first time last year, the idea of being cold enough to put on extra clothes in June is almost ludicrous.  Not twelve months ago I remember being hotter than I have ever been, surviving the humidity of a New York summer living pressed up against my air conditioning unit. This fat girl from California was simply not built for humidity and New York City let me know it.

I remember that I was there, and yet I don't.  I mean, I know it happened.  I even remember thinking about the impermanence of things as a way of coping.

This has to end eventually and some day this will only be a faint memory.

But here it is a year later and it truly is just a faint memory.

Our pasts are complicated stories that we hold to, made up of the moments that we remember tied together with our personal perceptions.  New research into memory shows that when we access memories, we rewrite them, thus our memories change and shift as we age and grow into different people.  Our pasts are truly just a construction.  And some day this very moment will be a part of that construction.

Our future is the same way.  We have hopes, ideas and plans for our lives, but in the end it's all just a projection.  There are so many variables in the world and so many ways that we will change and grow as the days pass.  In fact, we truly can't imagine the life we will live next year or a decade from now specifically because we are not the people we are going to be when we get there.  That doesn't mean don't plan or work towards long term goals.  It just means choose goals and work that you will enjoy as you are doing it.

So we have today.  This day and that is all.  You don't have to do anything special with this day.  It doesn't have to be epic.  You can lounge around all day and be lazy.  It can be just like any other day that you go to work or school and then come home.  But whatever today is, pay attention to it.  Be mindful of the choices you are making.  When you do have a choice, make the choices that reflect the you that you are proud to be.

Choose love.
Choose freedom.
Choose to be aware.

Enjoy today.