I don't know why I am always surprised when I get a million steps behind on life's to-do list. We recently returned from an amazing trip to Alaska, and I have yet to finish editing the 2,558 pictures I took. (And no, I'm not exaggerating.) On top of that, I still haven't had time to upload photos from our L.A.- Palm Springs - Laguna Beach - Central California trip in May.
I'm sure I will eventually find time to do these things, but one of the biggest gifts of both of these trips was the time we had just enjoying these experiences. Floating in the pool with the glowing mountain backdrop, looking out into the Alaskan twilight as humpbacks feed at the surface.
It is admittedly a bit challenging for me to live in the moment at times. I am a planner, a list-maker through and through. Yet on both of these trips, it was nearly impossible to worry or think about anything else except how extremely blessed we were to be experiencing this life. Living in that very moment. Enjoying the people we were with.
In the wake of the shootings in Aurora, CO early yesterday morning, I'm finding it difficult to focus on the things on my to-do list. A little over a month ago a similar, senselessly tragic event happened in Seattle. I didn't personally know the victims, but good and beautiful people who were once here are gone. And no rationalizing, or gun debate, or mental health debate, or finger pointing can bring those lives back. Yes, policy changes can take place and I salute those who are shaken into action. But those lives are gone. It's hard to know how to react, how to feel about the world that we live in, where these acts of violence occur randomly, out of our control.
It seems my own emotional response is to love more. To appreciate the people who are around me. To reflect on the unchangeable fact that time for each of us is finite. To understand that I cannot live in fear. To be a little kinder to those I do not know, because they may be struggling with loss or pain in their life. My heart goes out to those who have lost loved ones. May you be comforted by the time you had with those you lost. And may we all glean something from the madness.