The older I get, the more I become aware that there truly are no ordinary days.
Within my own body there reside one hundred trillion cells that are busily performing a synchronized dance involving a million moves per second, while I go about my life oblivious to it all. My brain alone, a tiny thing really in the great scheme of things, is home to 100 billion furiously busy neurons. At the end of any single day of the week my heart will have beaten approximately 100,000 times, and I will have taken approximately 17,280 breaths without having any conscious awareness of these essential processes.
Today, between 150 and 200 species of plant, insect, bird and mammal will become extinct, and every five seconds one absolutely unique and miraculous child will surrender his or her unfinished life due to malnutrition. And within the next 24 hours of my life, approximately 156,000 people will die, and 384,000 will be born.
There is no day that is truly unremarkable or even uneventful. This troubled and still beautiful world is overflowing with firsts and lasts, epiphanies and forgotten memories, mist filled mornings and stunning sunsets, hard won victories and irrevocable losses.
In “The Mermaid Chair” by Sue Monk Kidd, Jessie, the main character in the novel, observes while reflecting on her life, “I could even feel how perishable all my moments really were, how all my life they had come to me begging to be lived, to be cherished even.” Situated here and now in the midst of this July afternoon I am struck by the moments that have passed me by today unnoticed, uncelebrated, undiscovered.
There is so much to inspire awe that surrounds me. I press a few buttons and I am almost instantly graced by beautiful and meditative music. I recall the incredible courage and strength of a very special client that I worked with this morning. I bite into a sweet and fragrant orange grown and harvested far from where I am now. I watch a tiny bird at the feeder outside of my window, a fragile creature that will fly thousands of miles away in autumn, only to repeat the journey a few short months later. I savor the sight of the coneflowers gently waving in the breeze, their roots buried under the winter snow not so long ago only to rise again and follow the sunlight.
James O’ Donahue wrote, “Each day is a secret story woven around the radiant heart of wonder.” I am blessed by this day, one like so many others, one that will never exist again, one that is saturated with music and miracles.
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