Thursday, June 21, 2012

Devouring Daydreams

When I was a little kid I loved to sneak away from the noise of the afternoon neighborhood play and settle onto my bed for a good old fashioned daydream.

I dreamt up a cake-making/party-planning business; devised a brownie-selling scheme to earn enough money to visit Russia with my best friend (we hoped to find ourselves an orphan to raise); and came up with a strategy to sell rice krispie treats to earn money for the American Girl Doll I wanted.

Somewhere between childhood and adulthood I lost my propensity to dream up baking-related business ventures, but I didn't lose my propensity to daydream.

It's just that now I'm prone to daydream about a life better than one I currently have.

I imagine myself completing the Iron Man triathlon, living in the Andes mountains, and dancing in "The Lion King" on Broadway.

These trips to the land of 'If Only' are grand while they last, but I know that when I'm living in this fantasy world I miss out on the joys of living in my body, here in this world.

It's my body and its five senses that enable me to most fully engage and enjoy the grace that is around me.

It's my body that allows me to relish the sherbet-streaked sunset sky,

and savor the honeyed sweetness of my cuppa tea,

and enjoy the satisfaction of a particularly good sneeze.

So I'd like to avoid fantasizing in a way that devours the joys of living in a body, and would like to instead learn to be fully present in this body God gave me.

Learning new physical activities is one of the best ways I've found to do this.

Which is why, last Tuesday, you could have found me and two friends tripping across the park, hula hoops in hand, eager to put them to use.

Hula hooping is actually great for your core, and it burns a lot more calories than you'd expect.

It's also very awkward if you haven't done it in decades, like me.

Thankfully my friend, Meg, is a hula hooper extraordinaire and could give me some advice:

"Pay attention to the way the hoop feels as it travels around your waist.  After awhile your body will figure out how to keep it there," she said.

So I noticed.

Around and around it went.

In front,

to the side,


to the side;

Rolling slow and steady; rhythmic.

And then I noticed,

how my chest rose and fell with my breaths,

how the water in the hoop sloshed and swirled,

and how the light crept through the trees and landed on my shoulders.

© by scj


  1. "I miss out on the joys of living in my body, here in this world."

    Good reminder for me!

    Yesterday, I mowed the lawn. The sun on my face. The salt dripping down my brow to my lips. Little tastes of what you speak.

  2. Yes, mowing the lawn feels so good! Gosh, reading this makes me want to go mow right now.

    "Little tastes" of grace, everywhere.