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Everything Turned Green

5 June 2010 No Comment

In the park this morning I had a huge surprise. Everything had turned green!

It wasn’t the colour of the world that shocked me. After all, Spring started here a couple of months ago and that’s what tends to happen in the Spring, isn’t it? Especially late Spring!

Everything is supposed to turn green.

What shocked me was I could have sworn that yesterday the park was dead and grey with no green in sight.

Now I see at least two possible explanations for this.

1. A Miracle Happened

There could have been some miracle in the floral world whereby all the trees sprouted leaves overnight while my eyes were closed in sleep. I don’t discount this possibility, though my previous close observation of the plant world is things tend to happen a bit more slowly than that!

I do, however, believe in miracles so when I got home I carefully scanned the local news looking for some mention of this phenomena. Finding none I had no choice but to move to my second explanation.

2. Sleep Walking

It could be they had indeed sprouted leaves while I slept, and that I’d been sleeping for some days, maybe even weeks. Only this form of sleeping was with my eyes open and my mind and heart closed.

What Do I Fail To Notice?

It got me wondering how many other changes around me do I fail to notice because I’m either so wrapped up in other stuff or I’m just not taking the time to experience the world around me.

What changes in my children do I fail to notice?

My eldest daughter grew up. She transformed from a little girl into a grown woman of 18, not suddenly, but with many small delightful steps. My middle daughter turned 7 a couple of months ago – again, what have I missed?

What changes in myself?

Another year on and what have I experienced that passed straight through me because I wasn’t paying attention. I notice a few aches in my body to remind me I’m not getting any younger but I tend to assume those are passing things and nothing to do with the years of wear and tear on my physical form. What joys have I let go without fully putting myself into them?

What tears have I failed to shed because I was thinking about yesterday or tomorrow and forgetting that life is here and now in the small moments?

What world events out there have I not noticed?

And I’m not the only one. This may be a shallow example but I had a debate with Mona a couple of weeks ago about Bob Dylan, of all people. She was sure he had passed away and I was sure he hadn’t. Sorry, Bob if you’re reading this and I apologise for my wife writing you out of the world before your time. I heard many people were at your concert in Bucharest last week so I’m assuming I’m right on this occasion :)

Being Here v Being There

The point is how much we miss because we’re in other stuff.

Could we be better prepared for life if we open our eyes to the small changes? Could we prevent things that seem to happen in a moment, but in truth grow in front of us in small changes that eventually reach a tipping point so they seem like an event?

Things rarely happen suddenly – though that’s often how we perceive them.

Wars don’t start overnight – they build up. World poverty and hunger isn’t an event but a process. AIDS didn’t suddenly become a problem but has been around a long time. Volcanoes don’t just erupt – the tension in the earth builds bit by bit – unnoticed but that doesn’t mean it’s not happening. People rarely turn to crime on a whim (it happens, but it’s rare) but the seeds are sown long ago and we allow them to grow like weeds.

Once weeds have taken hold they are difficult to remove.

Are wars, crime, disease, poverty or climate change really in the hands of an individual who takes them over that tipping point or brings them to our attention?

Or are they in all our hands because we fail to notice them and take action by removing the weeds early on? Or worse – we do read the signs and leave it to others to do something about it?

And it’s not just the terrible things but the wonderful things happening around us each moment. Do we really appreciate and celebrate them moment by moment?

Has the world suddenly turned green or, more likely, has been turning for some time and I just didn’t notice?

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