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Live in the Now!

Yesterday I had the chance to visit the aquarium in Monterey, California. It’s a fantastically beautiful place with unbelievable aquatic displays. I could watch the ocean display for hours.

One unusual thing this visit did was to bring home a fact about depression and caregiving:  we have some control over depression and too often we refuse to use it: The simple fact of staying in the present moment and basking in it.

At every display in the museum, there were a hundred people busy taking pictures of the fish, of each other and looking at the instant picture, commenting on the quality.  A certain number of people made phone calls, texted, or checked e mail.  Very few were drinking in the moment before them, moments like when the sea turtle chased the hammerhead shark away or the zebra eels stroked each other in what appeared to be a very loving way.  They were too caught up in saving the moment instead of relishing the moment.

How often do we do that in daily life? How often do we miss what is in front of us because we are busy thinking of tomorrow or yesterday or what we would like to do instead? With depression, how much time do we spend thinking about how depressed we are or, as caregivers,  how we could be some place else other than with this depressed person?

Maybe that’s a contributing factor to depression or to the caregiver’s dilemma: we forget or are too preoccupied with the past and the future to see what is happening in the now.  We miss little steps of progress or a quick smile or the fact that a friend called us.  The now is full of surprises if we only look and are willing to ride out the moment for both good and bad.

Pictures are good but with today’s cameras we tend to overdo, missing the present moment.  Maybe a lot of society’s ills would be better if we stayed in the moment.  I’m convinced depression, caregiving and museum going would all benefit.

Here’s to the present moment with all its frustrations and learning….and surprises!



One Response

  1. Since I’m the mother, I was always the one with the camera. First of all, if I didn’t do it, it didn’t get done, and there would be no pictures. Secondly, everyone expected ME to be the one doing it, and if I didn’t they would be all, “hey, take a picture!”

    A few years ago, I realized exactly what you are saying. And I STILL take plenty of pictures, but NOT always. And I tell the people around me, “hey look, I want to enjoy this, and I don’t want to see everything from behind a camera. I want to just enjoy it.”

    it’s excellent advice. 😉

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