How is your month of gratitude going? I must admit, sometimes it’s easy to count my blessings and, other times, it’s more difficult. One way I’ve been using to reveal my blessings is to imagine that this is the last time. I know it is a little morbid but there will be a last time for so many things. When you imagine this moment may be the last time, you become more present and aware of the experience as well as infinitely more grateful for having had it . Recently, as many of you know, my mother-in-law was very ill. At 95 years old, we were expecting the worst. However, over the past few weeks, she has rallied and, although not what she was before she became ill, she is in great spirits and looking forward to my son’s upcoming wedding. My husband and I visit with her ever Sunday and, I must say, over the course of the past few years, there have been quite a few Sundays I’ve wished I was somewhere else. However, since she’s come home from the hospital, and having had the experience of thinking this will be the last time, I’ve come to relish our visits, being present for her stories, laughing with and at her, and I am so grateful she is feeling well and continues to play a large role in my life. As we come up to Thanksgiving, I am thinking this may be the last time my immediate family is so easily all together. Ryan is getting married next month and all the holidays that follow will necessarily have to be divvied up between us and his new in-laws. So, this year’s Thanksgiving will find me being more present and aware of our togetherness, and so grateful for that, since it will be the last time it will be easy to be just our nuclear family.
Eventually in life, there will be the last time you do something. It could be unremarkable – like the last time you drive your car before you sell it or the lease is up, the last time you wear a pair of jeans that no longer fit or are out of style, the last time you use a particular mug for your coffee. Many of us experienced these “last times” before the pandemic, not even knowing it was the last time for a while — like the last time we went to a concert, or a movie in a theater, or the last time we went into a crowd without being nervous. We truly never know when the last time will be. But, what if you knew it would be the last time? Would you be more present, more aware of the experience? Would you savor every minute with gratitude? Although the quote about “living each day as if it were your last” has always sounded morbid and negative to me, I’ve realized it really isn’t about death at all. It’s about being grateful for each precious moment of life. I know this may be a cliché and you’ve heard it before but if you approach every day like it’s your last, you will be truly grateful for the next day. You will know you are lucky to be alive and have been given this incredible opportunity to experience all that life has to offer. You won’t take your time for granted and you will be aware, mindful and grateful for the things that are important to you.
I hope to see you on your mat this week in any one of our in-studio or online classes where you can truly be present in each and every moment, living your life with awareness, and gratitude for each moment you have.
As always, much gratitude to you for reading my musings. Namaste, Leslie