self-care

Hedging our bets on an unknown future

Future tripping is not really a gamble but the stakes are our very lives.

The future lives in the unknown and sometimes we get that dopamine hit like the lever of a slot machine.  Will today be my lucky day?  Will I go pro or go home?  So we go outward, discarding the mundane and instead wishing the day away to a future point.

We end up not appreciating how good we have today:  Our lungs to breathe.  Our hearts to beat and pump.  Life force coursing through our veins.  Our loved ones here today to share a meal or a hug.  To think it will be better or I will feel complete or more organized/fit/healthy/alive in the future makes us miss the target.  The point is that today is all we have.

Dreams and goals are important and we shouldn’t dismiss them and not have them.  Just don’t let them crowd our vision of today.  What small steps can I take today?  What future do I envision?  Why does it hold power and energy or attention over right now?  What can I do this very moment to bring that vision closer to my reality?  Ask questions.  Take stock.  Be still and listen to the guidance.

Is wishing away the potty training stage and loads of laundry that goes with it worth not being present to see her smile?  Her full sentences form, her blooming creative play, her, “Momma, play with me?”  This is where I am and the future is uncertain.  Someday it will go by all too fast and be a distant memory.  Today I’m in her life.  We share the same roof and space.

I can wish the clutter and loud chaos away or I can see the bigger picture.   We have the means to acquire all these awesome toys that allow us stretch our imaginations and connect with each other.  I can witness how she’s finally grappling with her own body cues to use the bathroom on her own.  And as in all learning, there are missteps and accidents happen.  And I don’t want to miss it for a moment.

Hedging our bets on an unknown future robs us of what is happening in the here and now.  I will breathe and I will play, if only for today, because that’s where I live.

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