Saturday, December 19, 2009

I'm a Sucker for a Snowman


I live in the town where I was born. I didn't always live here. For 32 years I lived away in Los Angeles and elsewhere. But at the first opportunity to move back, we leaped into the unknown. The town has changed dramatically since I left at the age of 12, but some people I knew or who knew my parents and grandparents still live here, as does some family.

In the oak woodlands where I live, the winters are cold and the summers hot. When I was 3 or 4, we got snow here. I don't remember it, but there's a family snapshot of my dad, my older brother, and me making a snowman in the front yard.

I grew up to have a soft spot for snowmen. I collect them at Christmastime, and I have two boxes and one bag of snowmen in various forms. Sometimes I get lucky and find a snowman water globe like the one here. I really like the falling white snow and the music they play. It only lasts a moment before everything settles, and the music stops. But I can keep enjoying those moments.

I've learned in sobriety how to enjoy the moments. How to recognize one is happening, in the first place. As a drunk, life was just too full of varying miseries for me to enjoy much of anything except the first half-hour of the buzz. And that didn't last either.

Jolts of happiness and contentment come now at odd moments during my days. I'll feel a feeling and recognize it as something like joy. And today I pause when that moment is here, and I savor it. It's like my moments with the snowman water globe, so lovely while it's happening. Just like everything does, it will settle into ordinary soon enough.

But these moments of joy add up into a life that's actually very full of them, if I stay mindful.

What moments do you savor? What happened recently that gave you a burst of joy?

I hope your holidays are full of such sweet times.

16 comments:

RNSANE said...

You are so right..the little moments of job do add up. My youngest son's girlfriend, who is a senior at Cal Poly SLO, has been up here visiting this week ( she is a delight ful young lady ) and she brought her dog with her - the family dog, actually. Sammy is the sweetest thing - a ten-year-old, German Shepherd, Rhodesian Ridgeback mix. Katie went up to Tahoe for a couple of days and Sammy spent most of her time with me. I forgot what pleasure a dog can be...I'm sure she helped lower my blood pressure a lot. I know I will miss her presence terribly when they leave tomorrow! Sammy's been sleeping right by my bed when Katie and Jeremy aren't around and, somehow, I think I've even slept better.

That's been my special joy these past few days.

Just Be Real said...

Beautiful post enchantedoak. I see where part of your name comes from since you mentioned living in the oak woodlands. Thank you for sharing. Much blessings and hugs to you.

Shadow said...

aaah, to take the time to stop and savour them... thank you for the peace you impart today!

Dave King said...

As much as anything I have missed the snowmen building times since our children have grown up.

the walking man said...

Just Chris,

I spend every moment with my casting about to a thousand places. I come and read your words and they give me peace but at the same time I see my hands and hear the music playing in my ears and know in my mind all that is happening in any part of the universe I look to, all in a moment, a heartbeat containing all that is.

I am at all times joyous, sadness, peaceful, angry, all emotions at once and the one thing that wraps them all is calm. The looking, seeing and patient understanding that as comes the rain so will the flowers as comes the snow so will the snowmen.

There is no one moment more meritorious than another for they all contain all things a human strives to be if we simply look to them now.

Be Well

Madison said...

I love it when I know what needs to be accomplished and I'm almost finished.

Tall Kay said...

I didn't know you grew up there. How cool is that to run into people who knew your family.

I got a bag of M&M's delivered yesterday that say 'We love Gramma' on them. It brought joy and made me cry.

sarah said...

what a great post. things that make me happy are running in the woods, in the hills - it's too cold now to do that - I really miss it. Something that make me happy recently - pinky swearing with someone who is dying that she promised to stay strong.

Kristin H. said...

Your neck of the woods always brings back conflicted feelings for me. I did some of my worst drinking in your area and was also sober at times (when visiting my parents in Los Alamos.) I am grateful to see you enjoying life as it presents itself.

Merry Christmas.

~ Tabitha ~ said...

This is an inspiring post for anyone needing to see the joy more often in their lives.Some of us over look our own joy when we've been so preoccupied trying to keep everyone we love happy.I mean that in a codependent way-not always healthy but well meaning.Joy is a right for everyone to embrace.We have to share that message and our blogs sure help,especially posts like this one Chris Enchanted.

PS I love Snowman too :)

Dianne said...

Hmm, I always find peace when I learn more from you, we need mindfulness in everything.

I gave up a 5 day trip to ski with my family and brother today, to spend time doing the ordinary and home-bound things that our kids need.

I am trying to be mindful instead of sad.

big Jenn said...

I am reminded by my new friend of all the moments in my life. Thank you. jeNN

Elizabeth Mahlou said...

Oh, I love snow. I live in sunny California, but I am very fortunate. I travel. Next month I will be in Lithuania, and I know there will be several feet of snow. Actually, I love wherever I am. It's a good way to stay sane.

Have a blessed Christmas!

Brian Miller said...

so i have been unplugged for the weekend...and its been pretty amazing...we made snow forts, had snow ball fights...watched movies...played games...and snuggled...and each moment...i loved it...

Karen said...

As I age, I find more and more that I don't need things anymore. I am content in my self - two words here intended. I love my connections with others, my family and friends and my God. Because of them, I am enriched. Peace to you, dear friend on this Christmas.

Syd said...

I haven't had a burst of joy in a few days. I believe that the last burst of joy came when I had a wild game of table tennis at our lab party. It was fun.
My memories of joy are most intense in childhood. I really loved the snow days when I would wake up and the day was gray with snow falling.

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