“The bad news is, time flies. The good news is you’re the pilot.” – Michael Altshuler
When our kids were younger, and still living at home, we used to go on vacations about once a year. When they were really little we had a pop-up camper we towed out to Colorado or South Dakota for a week or so. Once they were older the tight space of a camper proved a bit challenging for our family of 6, so we rented condos or hotel rooms. But for a couple of years we rented a big house in the mountains of Colorado, and it proved to be a family favorite.
Perched on the side of a mountain, seven curving, climbing miles up a not-so-well traveled road, we didn’t run to the grocery store on a whim. We were entertained by hiking trails that snaked around the property. We read books on the stone patio overlooking the Ruedi Reservoir, and we sought out the thrills of white water rafting and mountain biking. These vacations imprinted memories worth repeating; inspiring me to seek out a similar rental property now, more than 15 years later.
So, it’s with great excitement that our grown family of 15 humans and three dogs, prepares for a similar trip to a house in the mountains where we will cohabitate (dogs included) for a week. Five vehicles filled to the gills with groceries, diapers, pac-n-plays and backpacks, will descend on our pine and aspen-bordered playground, and we are all giddy with anticipation.
In keeping with the nostalgic theme, I gave the kids an assignment one day. I sent them all an email and asked them to come up with at least 5 songs that reminded them of growing up. I planned to make a playlist of these songs to take on our trip. I was not prepared for the 80-plus songs and dozens of emails, memories and jokes that followed. Evidently we listened to music a lot when the kids were growing up. My husband is the master of stereo and sound equipment. He has a knack for playing the right song, in the perfect moment, and introducing new music from a variety of genres. So, when one of our daughters came up with a song from artist Jann Arden I had to take a moment to remember. I even looked up the lyrics to her song “Good Mother,” and was suddenly struck by how connected life seems to be no matter how many years, or miles or experiences we encounter.
“…feet on ground, heart in hand, facing forward, be yourself…”
These words; these lines from a song released in 1994, are the mantra of my yoga practice today.
Feet on ground. Every yoga posture begins with being “rooted.” Whether seated, standing or inverted, we first look to a solid base to build on. Stability, focus and confidence rise from a solid foundation. In yoga, and in life.
Heart in hand. This is love, sharing, selflessness, charity. Heart in hand suggests looking beyond ourselves to our community, our environment and all the living creatures of the world. We are all small pieces of the larger picture, working together for the greater good.
Facing forward. The past is history, the future is outside of our grasp. It’s this moment in time that matters. Living in the moment is mindfulness. Paying attention. Observing without judgement. Facing forward. Gazing inward.
Be yourself. Authenticity. The daily practice of being faithful to your character, personality and spirit despite outside pressures. Irish playwright Oscar Wilde said it this way, “Be yourself. Everyone else is taken.”
I cannot wait to meet up with my family. I anticipate hugs and laughs and reminiscing to songs from the past. I look forward to warm days, cool nights, the scent of pine and mountain vistas. But on this day, in this moment, I am grateful for the karmic web that connects memories and family and present life through the simple words of an obscure song.
Laurie Kasperbauer is an active Florida Realtor specializing in properties in Naples and Marco Island. Laurie also enjoys the spiritual and physical benefits of yoga practice and instructs both group and private classes.