My body was running and my mind followed behind. Everything was back to back to back. I didn’t leave time for… living. I hadn’t noticed it. My sketchbook sat alone on the shelf, pencils on top. I would get around to finish that painting soon, I thought. My brand new ukulele remained, well, brand new.
Slowly I made changes. Stepping back, setting aside, and saying no. Time began to open up, like a convertible top being drawn down for the first day after a long winter. What I didn’t expect is what that time gave me. Time to draw, paint, read, write, explore, inspire, be inspired, get lost in the moment, get caught up in the spirit, make mistakes, feel fulfilled, be afraid…living.  My mind felt free, released from captivity of schedules and to-do lists. I came to realize that some of my favorite moments in life happen in the unplanned, in between, unoccupied time. I’m reminded of my favorite movie in high school, “Life moves pretty fast, if you don’t stop to look around once in a while, you could miss it,” (Ferris Bueller). But for me, it was even more than taking a look around. It was engaging with the world, reflecting on it, and giving back to it. All of which takes time. Precious, unplanned time.

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