Feeling The Rapture of Being Alive
“A day is not wasted when a memory is created.”The other day I was shopping near my home in Montego Bay for some cushion fabric. The young clerk assisting me reflected my preferences more accurately than I was aware of ̶ as if he knew me. He quickly guided me to just what I wanted. Thus, it seemed he was wise beyond his years. I thanked him for really listening to me and being so perceptive. Then I told him my name, asked for his, and questioned whether he ever wanted to go to the U.S. where I moved from. I'm always seeking, one way or another, to hear people reflect on the contrast between Jamaica and the U.S.“Not really, except perhaps for a short visit,” Adrian said. “It looks like living there is always a frantic stress to get more things. From the first moment you wake up, it's a push to go … go … go. I'd rather live here where we can move with the breeze. Where we learn to flow with the seasons of the ups and downs. We know that things are not what is most important.”
An anonymous quote came to mind, “A day is not wasted when a memory is created.” And this certainly was one for me. I shared the saying with Adrian, telling him how much I valued his thoughts. Adrian smiled warmly, adding,“Yes, and the greatest memories are created in the moments when we connect with life ̶ with the trees and the sea ̶ with the flowers and the sunsets ̶ with each person we meet ̶ we all are one family.”
I was so touched by his sentiments.It reminded me of Oprah Winfreywho attributed one of her life changingmoments to Maya Angelo who corrected her with something like (I paraphrase), Our legacy is not made up of the things we accomplish, but of the lives we touch.We chatted some more on thiswavelength. Then I asked Adrianwhat he liked to do during his sparetime? He said, “I don't have any spare time working 12 hours a day much of the week, but I make time-to read.
Otherwise, I would be robbing myself of gaining from the fullness of others.“I mostly get books from the library- by authors like Marcus Garvey,Claude McKay, Cheikh Anta Diop,Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, JosephCampbell, Deepak Chopra, EckartTolle, and Marianne Williamson.They confirm what I know deepinside about who we are…we allwant to be heard and acknowledgedas special. We all want to love andbe loved…to belong.
We all want our Earth and oceans and sky to be healthy so we can live our best lives.” I'm certain that this interaction,which could have been just a casualchat, will remain in my memory as aprofound “real life” experience…ofbeing in the moment with another soul acknowledging the rapture of being alive, and of what's really important.And Adrian is right. There is so much to read out there, just waiting for us to tap into the wisdom of why we're here on Earth and the importance of expressing our gratitude ̶ for the positive impact onourselves as well as others. I get somuch of my ability to be peaceful inthese crazy times ̶ from reading.It is easy to be convinced that we aretoo busy, but taking the time to readuplifting and illuminating authorshelp our souls dance past the turbulent whirlwind of how to collect more things … past despair, apathy, and disillusionment… to inspiration and purpose … to feeling connected and loved.
Cheri Avery Black