In that moment, I was so grateful to just be.
I was walking down an empty trail in the hills of Kentucky. My mind started to wander. I started to think about what I was going to do next. I started thinking about the rest of my day and what adventured I would be chasing after next. Then I stopped. I stopped moving, I stopped thinking, and I closed my eyes. I took a deep breath and realized what I was doing. I was not truly embracing the moment. People talk a lot about dwelling in the past and letting that weigh them down. This is rarely my vice. My vice is constantly looking ahead. While it is nice to look forward to what I hope will be enjoyable experiences, I become too focused on what is next. I miss out on experiencing everything that is around me in that moment.
So I opened my eyes, put away my camera, and really focused on what I was seeing. I rested my hand on the old oak tree beside me. I felt the grooves of the bark and the coolness of the moss. I leaned into it and listened to the noises it made in the wind. I thought about that fresh smell that you only get while in the woods. Then I looked up the trail to see three beautiful deer just about fifteen feet away from me. I looked into their eyes as they continued to walk towards me. As they crossed the trail in front of me, a tear rolled down my cheek.
For in that moment, I was so grateful to just be.