I recently became a father and there are plenty of really very cool things about that. But hands down one of the coolest things is how often my daughter teaches me not to take things for granted.
And let me tell you, I take a whole boat load of things for granted. A lot more than I ever would have guessed I did.
I consider myself to be a pretty thoughtful fellow. I endeavour to be present to the world, to "show up" in a genuine fashion.
But sometimes I wonder if life isn't a gradual process of forgetting wonderment. And the event of enlightenment -- the elusive dragon that so many of us are chasing -- is nothing more complicated than our constant reminding of ourselves to stop forgetting.
My daughter, Zoe, never forgets to remind herself to stop forgetting. She's in near constant wonder: of the sound that a spoon against the table makes as opposed to a block against the floor, of the lurching and unexpected meow of our cat, of the pure joy of our dog bouncing around with a toy, a bird flying by the window, or the sound of leaves rustling in the wind.
I watch her immerse herself in this wonder and when I'm open to not being such a grown up, she reminds me to stop forgetting that the world is a wonderful place. Then, if I'm smart, I slow down and stop worrying about all of my very important things and I allow myself a minute or two of wonder.
And you know, it's funny, but that minute or two, where I stop worrying so much about all of my very important things and I just sit in wonder, I'm pretty sure that makes me a better person who address all of his very important things a lot more intelligently and adeptly and sanely.
I had one of those moments a few weeks ago when we were sitting in park watching some clouds float by in the sky. It had been eons since I'd watched clouds float by. I'd kind of forgotten (shocking) that they move at all. But, of course, they do.
And I pulled out my iPhone -- one of my very important things -- and I got some video of a cloud floating by.
So, hey, give yourself less than two minutes to stare in wonder at this cloud floating by. Then get back to all of your very important things and see if that minute and change of time hasn't helped you out in some ineffable way.