I’m a big fan of writer Ann Lamott and follow her on Facebook. She recently posted about turning sixty-eight. To arrive at this age, she says, means you weren’t born yesterday. It means you have experienced a great deal–friends and family ravaged by cancer, Ukraine, Sandy Hook, the warming of the earth. “How do we handle unspeakable loss?” she asks. By having a few best friends with whom you can share your truth. “By 68, you know that the whole system of our lives works because we are not all nuts on the same day.” I absolutely love that line. Thank God my husband, kids, friends, and I aren’t all nuts on the same day. She goes on to say, going outside and looking up, beholding the whole “crazy drunken clown collage outside our windows provides almost too much beauty and renewal to take in.” Why does this matter? “…maybe noticing beauty changes things in a way we cannot begin to imagine.”
Her post provided perspective for me. I tend to obsess over what is right in front of my nose. And all too often, those obsessive thoughts are focused on something negative. Last weekend, however, I paused to notice the beauty encircling my sphere. The first stop on my beauty tour was the Dr. Phillips WDW Theater seeing the musical, Cats. The spectacle of the Dr. Phillips Center alone is worthy of the label, beauty.
The poignancy of the now very familiar song, “Memory”, sung by Grizabella, can only be captured and held by the word beauty. The second stop on the beauty parade route occurred in my own home with a visit from my beautiful, sensitive grandson, Austin. For twenty-seven hours, I was in a sweet state of contentment just being in proximity to him. Contentment amid the chaos of the world is worthy of the word beauty.
Excruciatingly beautiful are the only words I can summon to describe the performance of concert pianist Alon Goldstein and the Bach Festival Orchestra at Rollins College. The intimacy of Tiedtke Hall meant we could see Goldstein’s eyes roll back in his head as his fingers flew across the keys.
Meandering through the rose garden following the Sunday concert, we discovered the newly installed bronze sculpture of Mr. Rogers. The sculpture is a beautiful tribute to a beautiful man. The juxtaposition of art with the glorious weather and the sweet scent of roses carried by the lake breezes was nourishing.
I enjoyed the pause and the perspective. Now I just hope I avoid being nuts on the same day as my loved ones.