Something about the way the morning sun lit up the lake and the Canadian geese around it arrested my attention. Thankfully. Because something about the way the ground smelled arrested Rico and Roxy and I couldn’t get them moving again. The distraction snapped my irritation.
Since they’re both eight years-old now and with various issues and illnesses, I try to check my impatience and let them do their thing. About a year ago, I wrote about how to practice walking meditation with dogs. These days that usually becomes a standing meditation.
I’d be lying if I said that didn’t bother me. Not for the obvious reason that it’s another reminder — one I don’t need — that my babies aren’t babies anymore. They’re mortal. Every walk could, in fact, be our last as a pack.
I’ve been practicing grounding myself in the immediate moment. It helps redirect my attention away from that fear.
That practice, however, has been a double-edged sword. Because I’m so focused on the here and now, I want to get them moving, get them some exercise. They are still here with me and, by golly, we’re out for a walk. Albeit a shorter or slower one.
Perhaps it was the sharp sunlight blinding my eyes as I turned back toward them to plead for them to move. Or maybe it was yet another prod by the universe, a divine intervention to wake up. But the scene took my break away. I happened to be just receptive enough to receive the message.
That message? Take every opportunity to soak in the world surrounding me. Especially when doing so also makes Rico and Roxy happy. Don’t just see. Let my eye rest wherever it’s naturally drawn. Let myself feel what I see. Feel the awe. And most importantly, feel the gratitude for being here. Now.