oh, how you shine!

As the fuss and fluster of the season settles, a calmness that comes from being back in the quiet space of my own making moves through me, like a welcome summer breeze.

The rare treat of a second, unhurried cup of morning coffee is accompanied by reading a new-to-me piece of fiction while snugly wrapped in a cotton blanket recently gifted to me by my sister because it looked like a blanket that belongs to a writer.

Warmed by the coffee and my new blanket, I also spend time engaging in backwards and forwards reflection that has been my lifelong habit as a new year begins. While I have no regrets or resolutions, I am keenly aware of how many people inspire and encourage me.

As it turns out, that person is you. You inspire me!

I appreciate how you create and nurture breathing space into your days and your life. How you work to make your days rush-free by reducing unnecessary obligations and the soul-numbing tech distractions that can fill a day to a chaotic overflowing.  You balance the unavoidable busy times with extra doses of nourishing down time. You leave spaces in your day to putter, to notice and challenge your thoughts, to breathe deeply and slowly to re-centre yourself.

I am inspired by how you observe happiness that already exists in your life when it would be so easy to dwell on what is not working so well or focus on the tiresome weight of being conscious. When you see the simple joy of the bubbles that are rinsed off your drinking glasses while washing the dishes.  How you mindfully sweep the dust and crumbs into the dustpan with your broom. How you notice the seasonal quality of the light coming through the window.  And how you regularly express gratitude for others in your life with a lightness of one who is free.

And I am awed by your radical kindness, toward yourself and others. How you balance thoughtful, self-discipline with bouts of guilt-free indulgence. And how you intentionally forge your ungracious, judgemental, unspoken thoughts into kind words and supportive actions. How you give your undivided, accepting attention to the one who is standing right in front of you allowing them to feel treasured and heard.

With each step you take, you are ordinarily bold and fearlessly average every single day.  And I thank you.

Please press on, all you shining stars!  You are a true light in my life and are making a genuine difference to me.