Three years ago around this time, I was on my first solo trip. I spent a month wandering around Costa Rica, doing the whole soul searching thing. The meandering, slow days allowed for ample reflection.
June 20, 2011:
“Being down here has reminded me of the beauty of a simple life. The other morning, I went for a walk down the beach and saw a lone fisherman. He would go out in the water with his line, wait patiently, and then go back and sit on the shore. He did this for hours. Inspired, I decided to just sit and watch the water for a couple of hours. Thoughts kept creeping into my mind: ‘You should do something.’ ‘Hmm, what do I need to do first when I get home?’ ‘What should I write my next blog about?'”
Not a whole lot has changed since then.
Though I crave adventure and excitement, I find the most joy in simplicity, in the simple life, but achieving this is another story. On Friday, after a hectic week of “on the go,” I had twenty minutes before my friend would arrive to pick me up for a bachelorette weekend in the mountains. As I sat down on my couch to wait, the first thoughts that came to mind were How should I fill this time? Can I fit in some more project work? Maybe I could start a movie? Waste some time on Instagram? And then I laughed. I reached over and ruffled my cat’s fur, and I decided to look out the window. And do nothing else.
And it was wonderful.
Late that night, after the rest of the bachelorette revellers were tucked away in bed, the bride-to-be and another close friend and I had a chance to just sit and talk. We laughed about the night’s antics, and then the conversation shifted to our busy lives. “Our society is consumed with the idea of ‘busyness,'” one friend said. “We rush around filling our days, but is it all really necessary? When you ask someone how she’s doing, the response is almost always ‘Good. Busy.'”
I am certainly guilty of this. Why is this the default response? To let the person asking know that we don’t really have all that much time to be talking to them? To make sure we fit in with all the other “busy” people? We are all busy people, but just what are we busy doing?
The difference between a busy life and a full life is vast. And when I think back on my days, I don’t want to remember being busy. I want to remember living a life that was full of family and friends and work that I was passionate about. I want to remember experiences and relationships.
Congratulations, beautiful friend. I can’t wait to celebrate your big day with you.