Stop and smell the roses

I’d wanted Archie to come to bed with me last night. But he didn’t. He wasn’t in any of his usual places. I planned to take him by surprise, pounce on him and forcibly deposit him behind my knees. A pipe dream. He was busy doing whatever he needed to be doing, in the right place at the right time. This morning, I woke up to birds singing in the mist and the little hunter purring on my back.

And here’s the thing. Life is exactly the way it’s meant to be. I just need to notice the beauty of what is. I’d planned to buy a ridiculously expensive bunch of flowers for my Christmas table. But the hydrangeas that I’d been dreaming of nurturing this summer, are flowering. There are bunches of blue blossoms on a bush at the bottom of the garden. It’s not the one I planned on having but it’s the plant that loves where it landed up, tucked away behind some rocky steps.

A cobalt platter with freshly painted lemons drifted into my dreams this morning. I don’t have one, but it’s real. And beautiful. Our quirky wooden Christmas tree is up and I’d planned to decorate it in gold and silver balls. Instead, it’s developed into a forest scene, with naughty fairies peeping around branches. White washed wooden stars hang from bits of string and when the tiny lights are on, a line of cherub angels dangle precariously down the middle. If I find a few pine cones, I plan to add them to the scene. That is, if they are meant to be there…

Living in the moment, means letting go of too much planning. It’s about allowing. Spontaneity is squashed by rigid expectations. Sometimes the precious moments slip by in the whirr of what things should be like. Christmases past and to come, cloud the one that’s happening right now. But this one is important. Perhaps more important than we can imagine. So let the joy in. Connect with your loved ones. Reach out to your creator. Go to the service you feel drawn to, even if it happens to be impractical. Mine is in the little stone church in Simonstown, where my childhood flashes before me and I long for a new doll and colourful ribbons.

As you go about your day, remember to allow those magical moments. All of them. I’m experiencing one right now. Archie has decided to come back for another snooze. I’ve snuggled under my duvet again. Mince pies pop into my vision. I haven’t made them yet, but the smell is unmistakable.

It’s almost Christmas. And that’s exciting. But right now is where it’s really at. So stop. Smell those hydrangeas while they’re there and you are able…

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