The last thing I wanted to do is stand on a chair and pull the muck out from the gutters. But my mom asked me to do it. So I did it.
Normally, this would be my dad’s duty. But “normal” has left the building a few winters ago.
And as always, my mind toggled between spiritual philosophies as I grabbed fistfuls of soggy, lifeless leaves.
Should I focus on gratefulness? Forgivenesses? Lightheartedness? Holiness?
I settled on straight-up nothingness.
Without thoughts, my foul feelings faded and I transitioned, as The Dude would say, into abiding. Abiding in the crisp air. In the setting sun. In the breath.
I looked beyond the roof and saw a nest in a tree.
In that moment, I thought that the birds and other animals are the true inhabitants of this planet and you and I, and our silly problems, are just passing through. It still feels kind of true.
I showered up, ate my legal limit of lentils and Brussels sprouts, and got in the car to head to Starbucks.
At a red light, an asshole in an SUV quickly closed in behind me and I wasn’t sure if he was going to stop.
I braced for impact.
I thought how strange it is that our consciousness can literally be knocked right out of our bodies. In one second, everything that makes us us, can get turned off like a light switch and we’d be as lifeless as a old cigarette butt on a city sidewalk.
Where, if anywhere, do we go?
I really want to know. But not badly enough to know now.
Thankfully, the SUV found its breaks.
Now I have more time to think about spiritual philosophies. More time to think about thinking. More time to remember that the only thoughts worth having while you’re outside doing a favor for your mom, while you’re missing your dad, are the ones that remind you to stop all of your thinking.
Stop and just be.
Just be as we’re passing through.
“In Live Like a Fruit Fly, Gabe Berman shares his recipe for living a more joyful, worthwhile, and abundant life in every way. A witty, entertaining, and insightful read.” — Deepak Chopra, Author, The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success