Simplifying Life: Appreciating the Small Things

I have a friend who is a young woman and our personalities are so similar, you might think we are mother and daughter. Our personalities are almost identical. Our thoughts, our karma, seem to be one in the same. We believe in fate, the belief that we are responsible for carving out our destiny and, just as importantly, we know the importance and need to be mindful to take advantage of the simple things in life.

One day, we were sitting in my home discussing our websites (we each own one) with my dog, Orchid, between us. Naturally she has a dog too! She made a gesture lifting her hands so I could see the inside of her wrist where she had placed her tattoo that reads, “simply be.” She explained the purpose of the two words and the reason for the placement of her tattoo. The words were to give her a heads up when stress was knocking on her door. The placement of her tattoo was for a specific reason – “simply be” was for her eyes only. I loved that!

No, I do not have a tattoo and when and if I do I will either copy my friend’s or put the word “walk” on the inside of my wrist on the same hand as my red Kabbalah string! Why? Because walking is an exercise in appreciating the simple things in life and like my grandmother’s chicken soup, walking, does something for my soul! Walking lifts my spirit, tones my muscles, lets me feel the earth beneath my feet and see the godliness of nature surrounding me. My walk charms me by allowing me to have Orchid by my side, quiet time to dream and reflect and increase my vitality — mentally and physically. Walking allows me to simply be.

I walk everyday. When I was in a cast and a walking boot for four months healing from surgery from a broken ankle, I choose to use a walker instead of a scooter.

I walked.

If you are not a walker and would like to start a new routine, this is what I advise for starters, until you find your own path — start off with a purpose. Choose either a destination point, a long walk with your dog or a daily walk with a dear friend or loving spouse – it is good for your heart in more ways than one!

This is my routine in the spring, summer and fall in Chicago, my hometown. I live in the middle of the city with my husband, Shelly, and our dog. We are in the midst of marvelous hustle and bustle. My chosen time to walk is in the early morning and always with my dog. The city is quiet. We walk by the shops and window shop, then proceed to our large neighborhood park a block from home that has a soft track. We walk the track together — four times around is one mile. We do two miles. Then we head toward home and pass the Museum of Contemporary Art, which has fifty steps to climb before reaching the top. Orchid runs up and I walk up. We then sit at the top. I text my daughters and grandchildren and Orchid sits by my side as we listen and watch my beautiful city of Chicago open her eyes as the day begins.