Perception dictates reality. I’ll let you think about that for a moment. In a search for what is real, true, accurate, the challenge is to get outside of a limited perception. Open the mind to possibilities. For outside a constrictive perception is where truth lives. Perhaps a lovely example would be in order.
Years ago, while living in Vernal UT and raising my kids a wonderful incident of enlightenment took place. The day had been long. The kids had eaten dinner around 5pm yet when I got home from school about 7pm that summer evening my 2 youngest said they were hungry and wanted to go play at the park. Thinking fresh air would knock them out for the night, I put Adam 6, and Danica almost 4 in the car, picked up a pizza and headed to our favorite park.
We picked a lovely spot on a grassy hill overlooking the beautiful park with playgrounds and ball fields and laid out our impromptu pizza picnic. The kids chatted about their day, marveled over the deliciousness of the pizza, reveling in the alone time with the busy mom.
Divorced less than a year, raising all these kids while working and going to school full time, they really didn’t get much time with me. I squeezed in quick trips to the reservoir to the north, occasional trips to Tucson, Steamboat Springs and Salt Lake City, as road trips were fun times together. But the day to day grind was a grind and my kids had lost their dad and most of their mom in the process.
I looked at my cute kids in their colorful outfits of their choosing, then across the playground with equipment in primary colors and then the gorgeous colors of the sun setting over the treetops and hills to the west. “Oh look kids!” “Look at how beautiful the sunset is with all the purples, pinks and oranges,” I said.
Adam turned to look and said, “Much better than when you were a kid and the whole world was black and white, Mom!”
Wow! I was stunned! Because of old photos and movies like ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ we had watched, my 6 year old son’s perception of a bygone world was one without color!
“Oh honey! The world wasn’t black and white! It was full of color! We just hadn’t invented cameras and film to capture the color yet!”
His eyes got big, his mouth fell open and with an sharp intake of breath he said, “I know something other kids don’t!”
Magical and charming to witness the youthful mind taking in such a key piece of truth to shift perception forever!
I have always remembered this event with such reverence as it taught me much. To look at life through the eyes of a child is such a gift. To experience the wonder of new knowledge, to facilitate the acquiring of knowledge in another, to participate in the chain reaction of us all learning something new, one after another, is a gift of life.
Another gift in my life right now is living alone. It is something I have never done in my life. I do not know how long I will live alone. Always or briefly or somewhere in between. I do know that I treasure this time. I am alone with my thoughts and feelings and am beginning to see where I end and others begin. I am seeing where my perceptions have been colored by others, often to the point there is no me in my perceptions. It is something I am remedying as my intent is to be authentically me. Gathering the truths of others that fit, while letting all others go their own way. It is a beautiful and quite colorful place to be!
Namaste’ Adam and Danica! Thank you for a highlight in my life!