I walked onto the elevator in my apartment building, beginning my journey to work. As the door opened, I heard the woman inside heave an exasperated sigh. As I strode on, one foot barely in the elevator car, she angrily pressed the “door close” button.

Lucky for me, I got in before the door closed. But this was not quickly enough for the woman. She shook her head and looked down at her watch.

We’re all in such a hurry.

I could tell you how rude the woman was and how I took her impatience personally, but the truth is I’ve been that person.  I understand her. I’ve been her more times than i would like to acknowledge.

This, too often, is city life. In a hurry to get from one place to another. In a hurry to make it happen. We often don’t know what that is, but we do know we have to get there—now.

Last week, I got hurt. I did something awful to my tailbone and could hardly move for a few days. This was awful in many ways. There was also an unexpected benefit.

I was forced to slow down.

Instead, I noticed how the world has gone pink.  Nature, emerging from the harsh gray and brown of winter, has blossomed into a range of pastels of soft, girly blush and fiery fuchsia.

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It’s not that I just observed this—the last two posts will show you that—but now, I could feel this burst of energy permeate through me.

Because I was in pain, I had to slow down my normal hurried pace. I began to walk slowly and take carefully measured steps. I felt the brisk air on my face and took notice of how the breezes made the budding trees sway.  Not speed walking through my morning, I saw how quickly everyone moved. I saw how everyone was lost in their phones or in their thoughts. I saw a city of people who have learned to pay no attention to the humanity around them.

I want to make a better effort at paying attention.

I took my time getting to work, and a funny thing happened. I still arrived on time, if not before. I noticed I was less stressed as I sat down at my desk, and less stressed throughout the day. Though I was in physical discomfort, I felt more at ease.

Does this mean my life is changed and I won’t rush around anymore? No. But it does mean I know there’s a better way.

Sometimes it takes some pain to be awakened to something better.

xo, with goodness and grace.

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