Lately, I am working on mindfulness. Mental awareness of what is present to me in the current moment; less multitasking; more taking note of the small pleasures and experiences that are overlooked when my mind is elsewhere. When I make the effort to practice mindfulness, I reach the end of the day with a clearer head and a more grateful spirit.
One of the easiest times to practice these mental adjustments is when I am running. Only several weeks ago I decided to take up running (read: jogging). I am gradually building my endurance. My muscles are growing stronger and my energy levels are increasing. It’s been wonderful, even when I limp through a day or two on sore legs and feet as I lengthen my runs. I run early, dragging myself out of bed at 5 a.m. and starting my route as soon as I’m able to get out the door. The town is quiet, the roads mostly empty, and the sunrise still finishing.
On Tuesday, I couldn’t take my eyes off the sky. The clouds were dark, keeping the sunrise at bay for longer than usual. They were heavy and wide. Everything below them seemed dwarfed under that canopy. Yesterday, it was the crickets. Each time I passed a cornfield, I found myself running through a symphony of crickets. The sound was tremendous!
I am trying to pay attention to those things. Not only on my runs, but everywhere else, too. This morning it was the imaginary scenes playing out between my almost three year old’s toys in his first minutes out of bed. I stood out of view for a bit to listen before going to say good morning.
What will I notice in the course of tonight or tomorrow that I am apt to overlook? I am happily waiting to find out.
Published by Carrie Sue Barnes
Carrie Sue Barnes is a fiction author and blogger who fell in love with creative writing as a grade schooler in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. She resides now in Wisconsin with her family, often pulling her love for the Midwest into her writing. Carrie Sue's debut novel, The Hidden Legacy, was released in 2018 by Bold Vision Books to strong reviews. Since then, she has published several short stories and continues to write short fiction and faith-inspired reflections on this site. Carrie Sue loves reading, kayaking, hugging her children and friends, rewatching The Office, and connecting with readers in person and on social media.
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