Every Wednesday, the girls and I connect with two other families for a day of exploring Orange County and beyond. Some days we go to a local park for a few hours, other days we cover miles to hike to a specific place, other times we park umbrellas at the beach and explore tide pools and have “chocolate pies” made out of sand served up by the most adorable sand-covered children. Yesterday we explored an OC Park that I often frequent on a bike, but rarely on foot. Our destination trail was only accessible by foot.
Anabelle said, “Mama, you’ve never seen this because you never get off your bike.”
And in her innocent comment, it hit me…what do I miss when I don’t get off the bike? Hiking with my kids keeps me present, slow and steady, focused on the beauty around me … most of which I miss when I’m zooming by on a a bike. And how does the bike represent other ways I miss life when I won’t get off my own agenda? When I won’t let go of the plan? When I don’t choose to take off my shoes and choose the 5-hour pace? I wonder what kind of beauty I miss when I am racing along.
Part of my intent for this year is to slow down. To say no. Even to things that I really want to say ‘yes’ to. Finding the balance in presence instead of packing it all in. It feels super awkward as I work my way into it, but maybe it will get more comfortable as I implement the practice.