This last weekend my friend Susan and I took our favorite annual trip to Crested Butte, Colorado for the Wildflower Festival. It’s hard to find adjectives that describe how beautiful the hillsides and meadows are filled with wildflowers of many different colors. On Saturday, we took a hike on Snodgrass Trail and were making our way slowly up the trail, with stops to take photos and just be in awe of the mountains and the wildflowers. A couple were approaching at a pretty good clip so we stepped aside to let them past. As they passed us we heard the guy say “We need to hurry to get there.” and out of my mouth came “You’re already there!” I realized then that we often hurry to get somewhere else, to get “there” when what’s in front of us, right in that moment, is the only real “there”. Surrounded by wildflowers and mountains I was “ already there.”
I have thought about this moment for several days and have asked myself “How often do I hurry to get to where I think I want to be and trample on the beauty of the moment?” I could run across a field of wildflowers to be on time, but literally I would trample the wildflowers. What happens when I finally get there and discover I don’t want to be there after all? The days, weeks, months and years I spent trying to “arrive” were not replaceable; they were my life’s assets being spent and dwindling year by year. What a mess I’ve often made by squeezing the joy out of the moment in service of some future goal.
What if we were always “there”? We can’t do anything perfectly, but if we could be more aware of “now”, then “where” and “when” would become less important. For me, in the moment, it seems I have everything I need. The goals I set for myself can only be met by the many little decisions I make each day. I tend to be a worrier, but I think this change in thinking will lessen my worry habit. Worry can make me trample the wildflowers while I obsess, plan and embrace anxiety and I need to remember that dead flowers aren’t very pretty.
The sign says “Consider why you want to go there.” The beauty of “now” may convince you there is no place better to be.
Crested Butte Wildflower