Pexels stock photo - photo of a person drawing a green and brown bird.

A year ago, today and a little about being present.

This past week has marked a year since I was in France, with Nomadways, working with an amazing and inspiring group of people talking and learning about storytelling.

At the outset of the residency, we were each given a small notebook to keep track of our days, make notes, write, draw and dream in. I kept a very detailed journal of our time, wrote in mine, and even tracked what we ate!

This spring, over the past 12 days, I’ve been turning a page or two a day, seeing what new things were emerging in our days last time the Earth was in this spot around the sun – going through each of the workshops that we did, rediscovering little tidbits (I’m so glad I kept track of what we ate!) – in short, having a week-long, day-by-day anniversary observance.

It’s a year ago yesterday that I reunited with my Mom in Paris and said goodbye to all those brilliant minds and hearts.

Today I came across this (written while looking at pictures Nilay took during our photography workshop with Bogdan):

Once upon a time there was a little girl who loved colours.  

Every day she would wander from place to place trying to drink in all the colours she found with her eyes. She would draw them, write them, try to keep them in journals and books that she carried with her everywhere. 

Until one day she came to a tree. The tree was full of the most beautiful birds she had ever seen. She wanted to draw them, to keep images and colours of them in her books, but every time she looked at a bird, it would change places with another bird. 

Because of that she was unable to get a very good look at any one bird. She found that the more tied she was to the idea of keeping a record of the beautiful birds, the more they seemed to flit around, moving and shifting before her eyes. 

From then on, she left her books at home and took time to experience the beauty around her in the moment it was happening. Even though she didn’t write or draw all the beautiful colours to take them home, every day she still saw more. 

The moral of the story is to not worry about holding on to happiness – more will come. 

Just what I needed to read today. The sun is shining, the birds are in the trees. I’m going to stop trying to live in my memories now, and get busy being present here in this moment. Ahh.