Expect Only this Moment…

One of the aspects I so enjoy about living in North Carolina is that spring arrives on time. Even early…some years. It is not unusual to experience a warm sixty degree day in February. Unlike many things in life, spring in our corner of the world is typically pretty reliable. The short cold and rainy days give way to brilliant blue skies and warm winds.

My memory wants to say that springs have been pretty reliable…but this year seems to be an exception. This year, spring is not committing. One day we get those sun filled afternoons but the next five are mixed with cold rain, freezing temperatures, and even whispers of snow flakes. What gives? I want the expected warmth of spring. The one that draws me to the nursery to begin the planting season, the one that begs me to take a book to the porch.

As unreliable as the prediction of spring has been, it has served its purpose. Mother Nature is yet again reminding me that there is no merit in grasping at expectations. Expectations come when I am no longer attuned to this moment and I begin living in the next. Expectations can cause disappoint only if I wed myself to them.

It may seem a juxtaposition to say we should not create expectations and we should expect to live in the moment, but actually the two go hand in hand. I have expectations of myself—to live fully as possible, to be generous to others and myself, and to serve the world around me to the best of my ability. But I also must relinquish expectations that only serve to disengage me from the moment at hand. The weather is a simple example—I can be frustrated that plans are spoiled or that my winter hat and gloves still serve me daily well into spring or I can release this expectation and instead welcome what is a part of my world.

The more complex and involved example is about me being more reliable in how I handle, accept, and even thrive during moments of unexpectedness. If I can practice this, then my mind and my heart are open to all that is possible.

The lure of the distant is deceptive. The great opportunity is where you are. ~John Burroughs

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