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Tuesday, November 19, 2013

What I Learned in Paradise

I have been back to reality for about a week and a half from having experienced one of the greatest trips of my life. Truthfully, I was in denial of reality until a few days ago when one of my children threw up all over the interior of our new car. That was just what I needed didn't realize I needed to remind myself to wake back up and remember that I wasn't in St. John any longer. If you have not been to St. John, let me just tell you that it was probably the closest to paradise that I have ever been. Crystal blue waters, 85 degrees, stunning beaches, snorkeling, phenomenal food and the rum... I can't even begin to tell you how ridiculously enticing those rum drinks were. And did I mention that we didn't bring our kids?

Just my husband and I with another fabulous couple with a jeep and a villa. PARADISE. Leaving the door only required grabbing a map and a water bottle. If you have young children, I know that is really the part that sounds truly amazing. And it was.

I am not sure if I will get another chance in the next decade to escape real life again so I wanted to capture this moment in time, feeling that sun so close, and remembering that it actually happened; it wasn't just a dream though if I didn't have pictures and a fading tan line it would be hard for me to believe. Here is what I learned in paradise:

  • Silence is bliss. Don't get me wrong. I love the energy and sounds of the world, especially those that come from my children. I try to not only embrace it, but to feed off of it and ignite me to play and have more fun in these days. But sometimes it is loud. Insanely high pitched screaming at all times loud. And I forget how therapeutic it can be still with my own mind. We don't realize how much noise fills our days until we have these rare stunning moments of quiet where we can just be aware of our own selves. I realized that this is why I crave yoga- that stillness and silence is priceless. On our trip, I would meditate on our deck and I could hear the sounds of tree frogs and nature and breath and peace and I fell in love with it all. Meditation could change this world.
  • The sun rejuvenates the spirit. Vitamin D is our friend. There is so much talk about too much sun exposure, skin cancer, dark spots, certain hours that should be avoided in the day, and yadda yadda yadda that we have built up a certain fear of the sun. Some fear is healthy but too much that you avoid it and you are missing out on a beautiful, natural mood lifter and depression blocker. Let's throw on some sunscreen and go soak in some happiness.
  • Be present. You know what you don't see in paradise (aside from anti-depressants)? People constantly checking their phones like their next breath depends on it. I would sometimes leave my phone in our room for an entire day and not even miss it. An entire day. I am back home and it is currently 7 inches away from me. But I'm instilling a parking lot policy for it when I'm with my kids. If we are outside than the phone is inside. I'm letting it charge when we play Go Fish. Being away helped me see how much more present and alive I can be when I'm giving my phone less power over me.
  • Be patient. No worries, mon. Island time is a miraculous thing. Stress is non-existent. Slowing down is the nature of the lifestyle. It is hard to care how long you have to wait for your entrees to  come when you have rum punch and sun kissed smiling people around you. Breathing in the moment and not being so pressed for every minute to go by faster than the next is what I hope to remember to take away. Every day. Slow down. Take it in. There is enough time for everything important in your life, you just have to be patient with yourself and awake in your life. Paradise is all around us, we just have to open our eyes to it. Booking a flight doesn't hurt either. 

“Some people feel the rain. Others just get wet.” 
 Bob Marley


Until next time...

1 comment:

  1. You learned some great life lessons! Most people don't get to that level of awareness until they get to be 65!