. I thought, when I go I will eat every seductive dish laid before me guiltlessly. Enjoying each bite and mystery wrapped in untried delicacies. And, do it without guilt, concern over calories, or what people may think. I have no interest in living unhealthy or over indulging.... it’s just time to slow down, enjoy life, and take in the priceless moment of now. As Americans we rush around all day, everyday. We tend to strive for too much material, and not enough spiritual. We lack the ability to ENJOY, to take in PLEASURE, even in the simplest of things, like eating an amazing meal. We take our meals in too fast, and many times on the go to the next big thing. Failing to recognize the moment, or even the efforts put into making the artistic culinary creation you just shoved in your mouth while running out the door to the next big thing meeting. Slow down, think of Spain’s siesta, or as Italian’s would call it (riposo). A time in midday when merchant owners, churches, and museums close their establishments to take in a lingering lunch with friends, or perhaps rejuvenate with an afternoon nap. It’s a cultural tradition deeply embedded within its people to enjoy life as it comes, care for oneself and others; all of which strengthen communal ties and enhance life’s pleasures. Okay, and hide from the climates afternoon high heat. But still, a worthy and notable tradition. Life truly passes in a twinkling of an eye, and every moment is precious. How do you want to live it? We take people and shared moments for granted, as if they will always be. We live too long in pain or suffering from losses. Understanding, healing from loss comes with its own process and timeline, but there comes a time when you reach the end of the road of hurt and must adjust your perspective. We fail to slow down and allow ourselves to take in the pleasures of life. We fail to take in the moment of now, and then miss its greatness. We say to ourselves... “Not now, I can’t eat this, can’t wear that, what would so-an-so think or say, I must get that next job promotion or degree,” and so on. We beat ourselves up running a race to some obscure finish line that will suggest, ‘We made it! You’re approved!’ And then what? Is that the time we rest, enjoy life, our family, food, sex, the globe? My point, why? Why wait to go to Italy to slow down or enjoy life’s pleasures and be happy? Enjoy life right here, right now. Often times we’re so busy looking back at the past, or looking too far into the future, that we miss life’s opportunities of now. As a friend of mine recently said, “Sometimes Rita, the very thing you are looking for is right in front of you, and you just can’t see it.” We overlook the moment, because we think we know better, or waste time striving for things that ultimately, in many cases, won’t bring the happiness you thought. So, if I want to satisfy my recent relentless cravings for a cappuccino and fresh baked almond crescents; I don’t have to go to Italy to create that moment. Create it now! Nor, do you need to ignore the Victoria Secret lingerie you’ve been eyeing in the store window. Buy it, take it home and wear it, even if just for you! Feel beautiful now! Burn the candles you’ve been saving for the special occasion that never really comes, now! Have the tea party with your daughter, the office can wait. You will not recoup that opportunity or moment again, so enjoy making a memory with her now! The memories we create with our loved ones will be the only thing that will ultimately count. Our memories are like the ‘last man standing.’ Precious moments that tenaciously remain until the end. Our memories remind us of our shared experiences and lives lived.
They transport us across time and space immediately upon reflection, and give us a connection to the person, place, or special event all over again. An eternal imprint made on the mind of someone’s life never forgotten, and priceless! Understand this, there is nothing to prove. Happiness is now, and is as easy as a simple shift in your attitude or perception. No one determines the successful finish lines in your life, but you. At the end of the day, the only people that will genuinely matter in your life are your family and closest friends. Don’t let life’s irreplaceable moments slip by; live presently and enjoy life now! As Joan of Arc would offer, “Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today!” -RRB Photo Credit: The Girl Tripped. .
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