Appreciationism…


I can honestly say that my morning shower is the best part of every day of my life.  What’s more, is that each shower feels like it’s the best one I’ve ever had.  How could any morning shower ever feel as good as the one I took today…?  Yet it always does.

When I look to my front yard each morning, on those rare mornings when sunlight actually hits it, it always pops brighter and looks more alive than the day before.  Yup, today was that day.

I listened to a song recently which was popular during my teens; Sister Golden Hair by America.  As I contemplated the lyrics and drifted back in time, I felt it was the most clever and poignant song I had ever heard.  I really felt that as I was listening.

Maybe later today, or sometime down the road, I’ll hear another song, and whatever song that might be, I will think that is the most poignant and clever song I’ve ever heard.  And at that time, I will also mean it.

The workout I just had…?  Is almost always the best one of my life!  Most of the time, when I wrap my fingers around that cold steel bar, the deadlift I am about to commit is the most important set I will ever attempt, and nothing else will be on my mind.

That’s just how life is for me.  If nothing else, I enter each day with a sincere appreciation for my appreciations.  In those moments when I am truly appreciating something, there just aren’t any other somethings other than the something I am appreciating at that moment.

On a full moon surf at Trestles, in June of 2009, my friend Mike observed of me,

“The look on your face when paddle is like each wave is the biggest wave on earth…”

Though I am certain he meant it as a critique of how I could improve, I took it as a great compliment.   I was caught in a moment, enjoying myself because each wave was the biggest wave on earth, if only in my mind.  And each one always will be.  That’s what appreciation does…

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Stroodle don’t surf!  But if he did….

Even with this essay, after I complete it and publish it to my website, I will be confident it’s the finest piece I have ever written.  At some point though, my daughter may read it and will remind me that it’s just another piece of overwritten dreck.  But as I write it in this moment, I am certain it’s fantastic.

It’s not that every moment is the best moment of my life, it’s been a rough week for me.  More bad things happened in the world.  People proudly said things that I found to be offensive if not outright asinine.  I hear songs that make me want to hurl, and occasionally I get a flavorless tomato.  But it’s those moments that strike me as worthy of my appreciation, that I bow to, and attempt to do so all day long – they alone keep me coming back!

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A hand to appreciate…

And what does all of this have to do with anything…?  That during any moment, all we have is that moment, and who and those who we may be with in that moment.  So last night when I held my mother’s frail hand and led her across my rocky driveway so she could see the full moon break the horizon, and as I watched her stare with awe, well that, that was my finest moment as a son – at least for now.  Thank you to landlords Stephanie and Brian for giving me a great gift last night.  Be well…  rc

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A gift of a vintage smudge pot for my fire pit…

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If you are not already a subscriber, please scroll up and do so.  Tell your friends about me — about what happens when I push the STOP button on the blender in my head.  Oh, and there’s this from The Cynics.  It might be the most poignant and clever song you’ll ever hear.  Enjoy…

16 responses

  1. Allow those songs from the past to remind you of the good times you had. Cherish every moment with your Mom and the loved ones around you. Love You Man…

  2. A very thoughtful and moving piece, Roy.

    I stay in the moment much of the time. It has its good and challenging effect on me. You sound a bit manic to me, but I’m telling myself it’s my curmudgeonly side coming out.

    Daddy’s Hands is a country music song that I’ve long appreciated.

  3. I once owned a JD Hillberry print, Holding Hands With Grampa. I have no idea what happened to it, and I wish I did. Divorce makes you get rid of things that don’t seem to matter at the time…

  4. “I been one poor correspondent, and I been too, too hard to find
    But it doesn’t mean you ain’t been on my mind” – Sister Golden Hair is indeed a great song. And I completely agree with your initial assessment that this is one of the finest essays you’ve ever written, Roy. I often feel the same rapture you speak of for the every day moments in my own life. I often exclaim out loud, to myself, that I cannot believe how lucky I am that I get to enjoy this beautiful sunrise, listen to this amazing music, etc. In fact, I am certain tonight, as I do most Sunday nights, I will be shocked by the reality that I am lucky enough to get to cozy up in front of my tv and eat a delicious chocolate chip muffin and get totally wrapped up in the story of a movie. Same muffin, same routine, every Sunday, and every time I am shocked by how awesome the gift of that moment is. I treasure the fact that I was given the gift of a tendency toward appreciationism. Thank you for your beautifully written essay, and all my best to you and your momma. Be well.

    • As always, Shannon, your answer hits it out of the park! Well said, all. I’ll have to try that chocolate muffin/movie thing. Really.

      Being appreciative is just a good way to be. I can’t remember not being this way. Thank you!

  5. Gratitude is my forever gift that has kept me above water through it all! Learning to be content and grateful in ALL circumstances! It’s so good to see you back and writing again Roy! Thankful as always for your words and insights! Hope you got some well needed rest today my friend!

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