Missing Beautiful

As I was standing on the porch last night, I saw the most amazing sky. The way the clouds shadowed and framed such a brilliant moon was breathtaking. Then I became annoyed because my camera was inside, and I was going to miss the shot. I was going to miss capturing beautiful moments to share with the rest of the world.

But then I caught myself. Several times over the last week I have missed beautiful pictures but not because I didn’t have my camera on me. No, I missed the shot because I did have my camera with me. I was so busy looking for beautiful pictures and awe-inspiring images, that I actually missed the moments. I was trying so hard to hold on to something fleeting that I couldn’t see what I was actually missing. The beauty of being still. I was in a hurry and many times scared away birds I was trying to photograph. I missed beautifully colored sunsets because I didn’t wait long enough. Occasionally, I was focused on a small detail instead of the landscape, and the moment was gone.

We’ve become a society that is always on the go. We’re always thinking about what to do next. We forget about what needs to be done, or not done, now. We get so busy planning the picturesque moments that simple, spontaneous, wonderful moments slip right on by us. At least that’s how I feel sometimes.

Tomorrow is my niece’s graduation party. That means we have been in prep mode for several days now. The decorations need to be finalized. The music needs to be organized. The food needs to be ordered. The camera needs to be charged and ready. Pictures need to be planned. In short, there really isn’t much down time. There isn’t much time for standing still and appreciating the people around us.

I have friends who take pictures of everything. Facebook and Instagram have become the new vacation photos slide show. They have so many pictures it amazes me. I have quite a few pictures as well. Pictures of my children playing board games, playing basketball, tinkering with building sets. I have pictures of them posing and being spontaneous. There are even pictures of them on stage. You know what I don’t have? Pictures of me with my children. Oh, there are pictures of me – with friends or performing. However, I don’t have but a handful of pictures that include the children and me.

I’ve been so busy trying to capture the moments that I’ve missed them. I was there, yes, but I wasn’t paying attention. I was behind the camera concentrating on using the correct shutter speed or framing the picture just right or focusing on just the detail. I was aggravated when someone didn’t smile so “Let’s do it again.”

Well, I don’t want to miss beautiful anymore. So, I’m not going to worry whether I have my camera or not. From now on, I’ll capture the beauty of the moment with a hug or a kiss or a smile. I’ll catch and hold the picturesque moments in my heart and share them with my family. I want my children to know without a doubt that they are beautiful. It’ll be okay if the world is missing my beautiful moments – as long as I’m not.

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