This Moment Matters

water drop splashing

Water drop splashing — MSN clipart photo provided by NVTOffice Clips

THIS MOMENT MATTERS . . . even in the writing of this story, I notice moments as fleeting, difficult to observe and yet compelling. My thoughts want to bounce around, sort, try to understand and decide what to do next. Herein, I believe, lies the secret that matters most in our lives, our happiness, and that is to take time and notice the moment. 

Sometimes, I get a feeling to stop what I’m doing, breathe deep, look around and savor the sounds I hear, feel the air ― smell the earth. That’s all we have, really, is a moment, no matter how hard we try to file it in the past, as a memory, or arrange it as a hope for the future. Just a moment: one after the other and never the same ― slipping away. It’s an attempt to hold onto something, to make it real or give it a purpose instead of allowing it to be what it is.

I remember one morning on my way to work. It was early and the sun was beginning to rise. As I came around the corner, the sun cast an orange glow on the mountain’s c­ascading boulders ahead of me. The beauty struck me so much that it caught my breath. I was in awe of the perfection of the shadows and radiance.

lone rock and outcroppings

Lone Rock and Outcroppings at Sunrise Photo by Pat Ruppel © 2014

Lone Rock

Lone Rock from Road Photo by Pat Ruppel © 2014

I almost stopped to turn around and get my camera, as I wasn’t far from home, but I knew it wouldn’t last.

So, I continued, slowly, winding down our road to the highway, enjoying intermittent glimpses of Nature’s magnificent canvas of the morning sunrise on Lone Rock and the outcroppings.

I reconciled not going back to get my camera, telling myself that the mountains and rocks are not going anywhere and the sun comes up the same every day. I’ll see it again. Then, I’ll get a picture, when I have more time.

another view of Lone Rock

Another View – Lone Rock Photo by Pat Ruppel © 2014

But, instead of pulling off to the side of the road and stopping to appreciate and treasure the moment, I had other things on my mind I needed to do ― like get to work. So far, I’ve never seen another sunrise quite like that on the mountains. There was magic that I still feel today and remember.

The secret in the energy of the moment is what we feel and capture. That stays with us and is what we hold when the moment is long gone. Though they pass so swiftly, we still remain and so does the feeling. There are some moments I’d rather forget and not feel but, thankfully, over time, most of those have lost their effect on me.

“We all sit around in a circle and suppose, while the secret sits in the center and knows.”  ~~ Robert Frost

I notice more these days that I’m getting better at feeling and capturing the moments. I wonder if it’s because my life has slowed down or if it’s because I’ve finally arrived at a place where I’m more willing to consciously be aware and treasure my life.

One example I had, of a moment that stayed with me, came in watching a video a couple of weeks ago of Leonard Cohen’s song, “Hallelujah”, sung by K.D. Lang. There is something about the pure energy of love and compassion that comes through in her performance that is real and powerful. It stirred me to my core, sent chills through my body and made me weep. Still does in watching it again to include here in my story.

Maybe you’ll see what I mean in watching it.

This is magic, when we have moments that touch our souls, cause us to pause and take us out of our element to transform us in some way. I believe it’s happening all the time, everywhere. It’s a matter of tuning into the moment and magic.

Pat from the ol’ kitchen table


30 thoughts on “This Moment Matters

  1. Pat, I love that photo you took of the mountain. So beautiful the way the sun was shining on it. Lovely post..thank you for reminding us of what is most important!! One moment at a time.

    • Thank you, Susan, for stopping by. I’m happy you enjoyed the photos and read. I still have much to learn in the editing part of them and not perfect. At least, you get an idea of what it looks like here in my corner of the world. So true in remembering to slow down and enjoy the moments. I have to remind myself quite frequently on that.

      Have a great weekend, my friend. 🙂

  2. I miss living among the mountains, the sunrise on them is beautiful. I realized a week ago that I missed stopping to listen or gaze at the world around me when I was surprised to hear geese flying overhead. There is something about being stuck inside that caused me to lose that sense of wonder of the moment.

    • Thank you, Lois. I’m glad you liked the photos. Like you did once, I enjoy the mountains and would miss them too. They’re the next best thing to the ocean I love so much.

      It must be hard not being as mobile as you were once. Strange how life happens to us — we’re constantly adjusting and working around things. Just from what I read on your site, I know you always keep your head high making lemonade out of lemons.

      I love the sound of geese too. When I hear them honking and see them in the sky, I always wonder what it would feel like to feel that free and fly through the air like that. Nice feeling. Hugs to you, my friend. Have a great weekend. 🙂

      • Pat, I grew up with water so while I miss the mountains I get homesick when not near water. It breaks my heart to see the destruction of the Appalachian mountains due to mountain-top removal. I can no longer travel through that area because it’s too hard to view.

        As for my mobility, I had 48 years to plan how I would manage if I ended up where I am now. I miss things, sure, but I have had such a wonderful life I regret nothing.

        I am like you with horses. I see how they move and without looking down to see where they are placing their legs can move so smoothly. I wonder what it would be like to be that in tune with your body and trust it.

        • I can really relate to what you’re saying, Lois. I grew up near the ocean on the east coast and, now, living in the middle of the country, the next best thing is living in the mountains.

          That’s a long time to know about an immobility and plan for it, Lois. Takes a lot of soul searching and courage to face something like that especially live with it. You’re an inspiration in your positive attitude and outlook on life and what you aspire to.

          I miss our horses and having the energy of those noble creatures around. We’ve had the opportunity to witness and experience some of the trust and tuning in as one with them in your body.

          I know there are farms and ranches that use horses for therapeutic treatment for physical and mental handicaps. Have you ever had a chance to check any of these out?

          • In many ways I prefer my situation. I had time to prepare and find a home that would work for the long term. Had I suffered an accident that changed my life if would have been much more difficult.

            I used to ride when I was younger, up until I had my children but after that I didn’t really have the time or money to pursue it. I also hiked a lot so I was very active for many years.

            There is a place just a few miles from me that does therapeutic riding but it is quite pricey at $60 an hour.

          • That’s what’s so beautiful about the human spirit, it’s real and humbling. It’s so amazing to me, Lois, how people handle the cards their dealt. Like yours, the stories and journeys are so different and unique and you’ve had the chance to work through them as you lived it.

            There’s nothing like sharing the energy of a horse and it sounds like you know what that feels like. Though I didn’t ride much, I felt it in being with them and through my husband and daughters when they rode. I can see why they’re used in therapy and I’ve read stories where they’ve saved people in being the only creature that can reach them. It would be interesting to try a therapy session to see what it’s like. 🙂

          • I do love horses. As I’m sure you saw they really do connect with us and have so much empathy. If we are having a bad day they pick it up and will come and nuzzle us to make us feel better.

            I spent a summer camping. I refused to sleep indoors and would be found each morning curled up sleeping with a young pony I took to caring for. The hours I spent with him were life-changing. I was only 8 but to this day remember his name (OJ) and everything about him.

          • I know, Lois, they have that special quality don’t they — majestic. I remember reading a book where horses were being used for therapy for troubled kids. In some cases, this was their last chance before juvenile detention or prison. There was one story I read that stayed with me.

            It was about a teenager who bulked at everything — grooming, classes, instructions, you name it, and wouldn’t cooperate with anyone or anything. He was introduced and matched up with a stallion that was also a little hard to handle and hit it off. One night, this boy decided he’d had enough of this world and was going to kill himself. He left the cabin to take off but decided to stop at the barn to say his goodbye’s to his new friend. They found him the next morning curled up in a fetal position with the horse standing guard over him. Who knows what transpired in the course of that night but somehow they made a connection no one had ever been able to make.

            Yes, they are amazing creatures, indeed. I love them!

          • Pat, what a great story, of love. That boy couldn’t leave without saying good bye to probably the first attachment he ever had and something between them kept him alive.

            Thank you.

          • Thank you, Lois. I wish I could remember the name of the book or the authors (I looked for it in my library with no luck). It’s a collection of stories of inspiring work that a mother and daughter, PhD professionals in their own right, are doing. Truly a testament of what can be done and what is available. 🙂

  3. Hi Pat! I really enjoyed your words and photos, as usual! 🙂 Living in Colorado we have so many beautiful moments every day. Thanks for the reminder to stop and enjoy them!

    • I love seeing you over here, Teri. Yes, it’s truly something special living in a place like Colorado. Nature is huge in its mountains in how they majestically rise to be noticed almost where ever you turn. Thank you for reading — warms my heart that you enjoyed it. Hope to see you soon and get together again. 🙂

    • Hi Stefanie – I’m happy you liked the photos. I agree with you that life is too short and we should make the most of our time enjoying it. Funny, how we don’t realize it while we’re living it sometimes.

      Thank you for stopping by, leaving your thoughts and adding to the conversation. Hope to see you again. 🙂

  4. I am always so much happier and more at peace with myself when I take the time to stop and really notice things. However, that’s not as always as it seems when day to day life goes on with its grind. I am taking a photography class which is very helpful in this area though 🙂

    • Hi Jeri – so true in feeling happier and more at peace when we’re able to stop to notice and appreciate life as it unfolds around us. Have to make the effort, like you say, or else we miss it when we’re consumed with the daily grind.

      I’m glad you’re into photography and learning more about it. That will help put you more in those places that give you peace and make you happy. 🙂

    • Thank you, John. I do feel fortunate to have so much beauty around me. Takes my breath away but I can take it for grant it, too, sometimes when life gets in the way.

      Happy to see your happy face over here, my friend. It’s been a long time. Hope you are well and having a good new year so far.

  5. It so easy to just keep going and not take a moment to see the beauty around us. I had stopped doing that so this resonated with me. I just started back walking this week and I realized how much I’ve missed the beauty of nature. I notice the little things I missed, like the birds fleeting form tree to tree, two squirrels chasing each other up a tree. a hawk screeching above. It all there if we just take a moment to notice, isn’t it. 🙂

    • I know what you mean, Susan. It seems like the daily noise and responsibilities take over and we miss the subtle shifts and sweet nuances that pass over undetected unless we stop to notice. Like you said, walking is a great way to catch those moments. I need to do more of it, too, otherwise, when it’s gone you can’t get it back the same, like the sunrise. 🙂

  6. OMG, Pat… That song sung by KD Lang totally made me bawl, but I feel compelled to get it for my iPod. 😉

    It’s been a rough day, but I think that the cruelty of the past is blurring the beauty of the present, for me.

    I saw a church sign, on my way home from being denied a small loan, and it said, “Jesus loves you, in spite of your choices.” I started crying, because I thought nobody could love me, at that point.

    And yet that is the reality. Forget cosmic figures. I came home to a husband and daughter who loved me, even if we would have to save up a bit to get out of this place. It’s not anything I ever thought I deserved or would experience, but here it is.

    Unconditional love, and bright pink sunrises on the way to work everyday. And, on my bike, I nearly crash into so many pedestrians, because they don’t even notice that they are about to walk into a cyclist… We all would be much happier if we attended to the world around us.

    • I’m so glad you got a chance to listen to it, Bethany. Not an accident you came across it today. Sounds like you needed to hear it. For me, the power of KD’s voice in that performance struck me to the deepest core of my being.

      I guess that’s why we weep. Truly is humbling to come into the presence of pure authentic love. We’ll take it, in all it’s glory, the highs and lows, one day at a time — one moment at a time and cherish the life we’re given.

      Hugs – take care, my friend. 🙂

  7. Pat, you really do have a gift for taking photos. I am a big fan of Leonard Cohen…I had the pleasure of attending his concert in Ottawa in 2013 and hearing him perform Hallelujah live. I also attended K.D. Lang’s concert several years ago and heard her version of the same song…they both sing it beautifully, with heart and soul. It is one of my all time favorites!

    • Thank you, Bev. I’m glad you liked them. The photos were taken after the fact and not quite the same as the morning sunrise of which I talked. Hopefully, they, at least, captured the essence and moment of what I remembered.

      It must have been exciting and inspiring to attend the concerts of Leonard Cohen and K.D. Lang, especially to experience the power of that song live. Wow! I can see why it would be favored and stay with you. I get that from her video and can’t imagine the feeling of being there in person. 🙂

  8. Oh Pat, I have been without my laptop for almost a week and I am so behind with catching up with everything so I am only just now getting to your posts.

    Firstly, I was very surprised to see your new look, and I love it! The photo of your kitchen table in the header is perfect, so inviting and just beautiful. I love your new site, you have done a marvelous job with it.

    I love this post, and your photos. I feel as if I have taken a journey with you through your neighborhood. How wonderful to take this drive to work, wow!

    I know just what you mean about being ‘in the moment’. That day when I pulled over to take the photo of a sunset I was so glad that I could do so but so many times I have been unable to and have regretted it. It just isn’t always possible.

    Hallelujah is one of my favourite songs and yes, the K D Lang version here is haunting. Thank you for sharing all you have here in this very thoughtful post Pat, and for once again inviting us to sit around your kitchen table for a soul-searching, heartfelt visit.
    Bless you my dear friend 🙂

    • So good to see you over here again, Sherri. Thank you for stopping by and I’m glad you liked the new look with the kitchen table. You’re the first one that’s commented on it. Hubby took a bunch of pictures last summer of our dining-room table but I couldn’t quite work them into my site until now. I got it to work with the new WordPress updates.

      I’m glad you also liked the read and could identify with being in the moment. It seems to get away from us a lot until we stop and become conscious of where we’re at and what we’re doing. You’re right about our drive around here. It is beautiful and we’re surrounded by mountains. Sometimes, I forget to notice but it’s not very often. I’m glad you were able to catch the photo of the sunset you were talking about. Now, you not only hold it in your memory but you can go back and look at it over and over with your eyes just like you were there again.

      The “Hallelujah” song by K.D. Lang is indeed haunting and inspiring. I don’t remember hearing that version of it until another blogger pointed me to it (I wish I could remember his name). I am forever grateful, as it’s become one of my favorites. I love the video, too, of her on stage walking around in her bare feet and singing it. It captures her genuine feelings and you witness her being swept up in the power of it. It’s so pure and real.

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts and sitting around my table with me. Hugs to you, my friend, heart-to-heart. 🙂

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