I was in my home town last week, engaging in the details associated with closing up a life. Who knew there were so many entities to be notified, contacts to be made and minutia to be tended to! For anyone who has lost a parent, this is probably familiar territory.
It is easy to get caught up in the swirl of activity required in order to get to this finish line. My tendency has always been to ‘git ‘er done’ in as quick a way possible. It makes be uneasy when details are left hanging out there, which is probably why I have become relatively efficient in handling issues and projects – it makes me feel better.
It is an engine from the auto plant in town. The plaque speaks to the vital importance of the auto industry to the community. In my rush, I almost walked right past it. I am glad I stopped. This turned out to be the beginning of the lowering of my RPMs. I got to the car just in time to burst into tears. Isn’t it funny what triggers us?
Thankfully, I pulled myself together pretty well before I got to the next stop, my mom’s credit union. For the umpteenth time I had to explain that she had died and produce a death certificate in order to take care of what needed taking care of. As I was driving out of the lot, the SLOW sign on the pavement stared me right in the face. OK, OK, I get it!
Since then I have tried to be mindful of my pace relative to all of this. I’ve been rewarded on occasion with noticing things that will soon enough live only in my memory – the Christmas hand towels still hanging in my mom’s bathroom, the lace curtains framing the jalousie windows in the kitchen, her reading glasses. Keeping true to my commitment to go slow is proving to be way harder than I thought it would be though. I have had a lifetime of practicing moving swiftly, wasting little motion. And while that approach has allowed me to be pretty darn productive, now I am wondering what I have missed along the way.
That whole being present thing, I think there’s something to that (duh!). With my commitment to being more in that space than in the past or future once again renewed, I am trying to have my daily intention focus on my pace and where I put my attention. All is good until I get put on hold by the cable company…