Pay Attention

I am sitting on our deck this morning before the heat comes screaming in around noon or one o’clock. Colorado may have low humidity, but 95 and above for days makes me complain. That and sadly, the smoke drifting in from fires burning in other states to the north. However, it isn’t all bad. We face the mountains and the view shifts nearly every day. Sometimes, the sky hovering over them reflects into a soft pink or the sun behind mixes oranges with shadows interspersed in the vistas. It’s a lovely painting.

We live on a hill and just beyond us, resting below, are three goats with three kids. I delight in the way the kids just casually stand on their mothers’ backs or when they “feel their oats,” as they say, and charge across the pasture, jumping into the air, kicking their legs out. They are so filled with happiness; they make me smile every time I watch them up close with binoculars (I hope their owner doesn’t see me and think I’m a stalker!). There are also two horses—a pinto and a bay. They are in two different, fenced pastures, so they meet up several times a day, resting their heads together over the fence while swatting their tails to brush off pesky flies. It’s endearing.

 I ask myself, “Why aren’t I out on this deck more, sitting in my favorite brown wicker rocking chair each and every morning, sipping my coffee with cream and a teaspoon of sugar, watching the animals below? There’s no solid answer except that like a big boulder on the side of a mountain, I start rolling and rolling with busyness until I crash. I can’t even tell you what I am doing all those times. Possibly cleaning house, shopping, loading the dishwasher, going somewhere I consider to be an absolute, without a doubt, for sure, absolute task. The morning slips away faster than my dog Rusty when he discovers his leash is unhooked. He’s over ten-years-old and still charges to the nearest tree to relieve himself, even though he accomplished that act at least twenty times on our half-hour walk.

Sadly for so many, Covid arrived and dictated we were to isolate. I had no other choice but to stay put because most of us in the country were homebound, with the exception of the courageous essential workers. For we three, it was decided we needed to use that time and gather our stories and narratives into creating our book. Finally. I truly believe we would never had completed this magnanimous goal if we wouldn’t have been homebound. We learned to use zoom and and nearly wore it out. We certainly met on it more times than we could count. We’re still meeting. As illustrated in our book, Telling Tales and Sharing Secrets, we take turns devising a prompt, write about it, and share the next weekWe relish the time together. Since I’ve moved and we can’t meet in person, well by gosh, we’ll do the second best and zoom!

I know I’m too busy and despite vaccinations, recently contracted Covid, which sent a clear message, being “slo-o-ow down.” My body is in command now. I hope to pay attention to this message. Watch the goats’ kids romp, listen to the horses whinny when one is out of view, wear the rocking wicker chair out. I need to value nature and my own well-being much more. It’s a great goal, an attainable one, if I just pay attention.