Savoring Daily Gifts

By Holly Bowne

Savoring Daily Gifts

Before I became a freelance writer, I worked in a corporate office setting. Although it was a creative department, the environment wasn’t always the most conducive to creativity. Dim florescent lighting. Drab gray paint. Management would swim up and down the hallway, ogling at us through our fishbowl offices to make certain we were really working. Not talking. Not laughing. Not daydreaming.

Believe it or not, it was while working there that I first developed my “Savoring Daily Gifts” philosophy. A sort of “Pollyanna-ish” principle acknowledging there is something good to be found in each day, and it’s our job to recognize and appreciate it. This philosophy was born out of my daily trips to the vending machine.

You’re making a weird face now, aren’t you?

Let me explain.

You see, I wasn’t a coffee drinker. So every day when the afternoon siesta hour threatened to overtake me, I would head to the vending machines and splurge on a chocolate brownie. Now I promise you, these weren’t just any ol’ chocolate brownies. These were the most awesome gooey, moist chocolate brownies, with a light sprinkling of nuts on top adding just the right amount of crunch. Brownie in hand, I would head back to my desk. Close my eyes. Turn my back on the fishbowl window. And delight in each delectable bite. It was a moment of pure bliss that I looked forward to each day. Co-workers would shake their heads and make “tsking” sounds when they spotted me with my daily chocolate fix. Like it was a bad thing. But it was truly a daily gift I savored. After I left the fishbowl, I learned to savor more significant daily gifts.

Like the gift of time. Unfortunately, it really does fly. It starts out slow as molasses when you’re a kid. Then it gradually picks up speed. And once you have kids of your own, zoom! You’re off and running. So I savor those precious moments when time seems to slow its inexorable pace. Curling up with my children and reading them bedtime stories. Stretching out on blankets in the yard with my family to watch for shooting stars on summer nights. Racing sleds down snow-covered hills, exhilarated as the icy wind bites our cheeks and noses. My husband gathering me close in his arms. At these moments I experience time holding its breath, just for an instant.

And I learned to savor relationships. I hadn’t realized how many of my relationships I’d been taking for granted until I was brought up sharply by the unexpected loss of a good friend. We’re blessed to be surrounded by some of the most amazing people every day, and we tend to forget that. I make a point to really talk with people I love every day. Hug people every day. Laugh every day.

I savor treasures. Treasures come in all shapes, sizes and values. One afternoon, I toured a travelling Egyptian tomb exhibit at our local museum. The deceased Egyptian was totally prepared to take all his most valuable possessions along with him when he left this world. Didn’t happen, of course. He’s gone and all his treasures are still here, turning to dust or being displayed in museums like the one I was in. I wondered if he had enjoyed any of those treasures while he was still alive.

I know parents who pack away their children’s scribbled drawings and coloring book pages mere moments after they’ve been presented. Select pieces of my own children’s artwork hang on our walls and decorate our kitchen countertops. And I never wait for special occasions to put on my diamond studs. I revel in their sparkle on my earlobes today. Right now.

The well-known cliché that we can’t take it with us is so true. We need to savor life’s abundant gifts every day. Witness a sunset. Play with your children – or grandchildren. And while you’re at it, eat some chocolate.

About this writer

  • Holly Bowne Holly Bowne’s work has appeared in regional, national and online publications. Visit her at www.hollybowne.blogspot.com where she explores the more humorous aspects of balancing the writing life with parenting her teenage children.

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2 Responses to “Savoring Daily Gifts”

  1. Kristine M Denholm says:

    What a well-written and thoughtful piece, Holly! Thank you. I look forward to reading more of your work!

  2. Thanks so much, Kristine! I’m so glad you liked it. :o)

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