In these small in-between moments, in the noticing

Sarah Wildman, on living the unremarkable life:

Each of those precious days was, indeed, a 10, but it was the fours and fives I began to crave: just lying on her bed, talking, watching her eat pasta and ask for more, seeing her swim. Even the ones and twos — when our car broke down and we needed to find a tow truck off island — felt like wins. What is a transportation problem but a manageable hassle, really? At least we were together, and not in a hospital.

A look at our daily lives through the lens of a simple score and seeing that even a seemingly bad score makes for a good day. Who makes us score this way? Maybe a 1 can be so bad that it affords us a great laugh at how ridiculously bad it went. By narrowing to a simple score, we can have space to look at our days more deeply and with other angles.

The future felt too full of uncertainty to sufficiently map out, and worrying just undermined moments that were calm. I began to focus, in a way I never had before, on this evening’s light, the feel of the sand today, the walk to the pier, the taste of the afternoon’s ice cream.

When we’re not here and now, we can miss the reality in front of us. Worrying about the future or the past reduces the fidelity of our present consciousness.

And yet:

Hyper presentness can have its drawbacks. I find it hard to plan more than a week in advance. I fear lost moments to an unreasonable degree; I can summon panic by missing the girls’ bedtime, knowing that a day has passed and I won’t get it back.

Feeling the sense of importance of being present, we can let this importance become a tyrant to our own selves. We fear we will lose it and are back with our worry again. We dance this dance, noticing ourselves doing it. Dance dance dance.

Take a breath. You’re still breathing. There is breathing. Breathing.