For Christmas this year some dear friends gave us a bell. It wasn’t just a pretty bell or a decorative bell, it was a bell with a story and the story went something like this:
A bell symbolizes magical enchantments.
As our family welcomes 2015 it will be in mindful awareness that we’ll ring the bell recognizing “the little moments”… A big fat belly laugh, a good talk, a yummy meal, a fragrant summer breeze, a beautiful moon, an unexpected hug, a giggle that echoes through the house or a snuggle on a rainy day…
Knowing how lucky we are to be in the little moments.
Right now. The present. Where life happens. We are in it.
We are grateful for YOU. As we bring in the New Year we will be ringing our bell in celebration of YOU in our lives.
Happy Holiday and may the New Year bring you a waterfall of beautiful “little moments” that make you feel loved and lucky.
What’s so lovely about a gift like this is that it isn’t so much a thing as an idea. An idea that, if allowed, has the power to change your life by simply adjusting your perspective. This fabulous family’s present wasn’t so much the gift of a small, reverberating piece of metal but, rather, the gift of awareness. In telling us they loved and appreciated us, our friends were reminding us to love and appreciate ourselves, to be mindful of the world around us and the small, often passed over moments that make it special and uniquely ours and, since receiving their gift, I’ve found myself infinitely more conscious of those moments both big and small. It’s my hope I’ll be able to hold onto those realizations well into the new year before I need reminding again.
It’s not that I’m physically carrying around the bell or rushing into a room to ring it in order to make a point. It’s more that I’ve accepted the idea of what ringing it represents and, since then I’ve been inspired numerous times to just say “ding” out loud.
My Dad dancing in the kitchen with Loch while my mother laughs and scoots out of the way. Ding. Skating outside with my family in the crisp Canadian air and finding, for once, I’m not out of breath while doing something physical. Ding. My childhood home filled with my childhood friends and the chatter and laughter of our children and families on Christmas Eve. Ding. Lochlan lying on the floor in his undies writing a thank you note to put alongside Santa’s milk and cookies. “I don’t want to just thank him for remembering ME Mommy. That’s too vain. I want to thank him for remembering all the children in the world!” Ding.
There was even a bell hung low on our tree this year so I knocked into it a couple of times while handing out the presents. In the classic Christmas film It’s a Wonderful Life George Bailey’s daughter has the famous line, “Teacher says, every time a bell rings an angel gets his wings” but that wasn’t my first thought when I heard it ring. In those moments when the sweet tinkling filled the air, I was pleased to discover the power of the bell also worked in reverse. In this case it was the sound itself that reminded me to stop and take stock of where I was and how I was feeling. Of course, given what I was doing, it was difficult not to feel grateful but, I think it could work in any variety of moments.
My life, despite it’s obvious (and hidden) struggles, is full to the brim of reasons to ring the bell. Multiple moments to stop, take notice and say thanks. This world moves so fast. So many of us are pushed to accomplish more, succeed more, earn more that we often don’t realize – bombing towards our next goal, next desire, next instagram post – that so much around us is already wonderful, already successful, already complete and joyous.
The bell, whether its’ sound comes before or after those realizations, is a reminder of that.
The bell resonates, not only in the air but, in our hearts and I, for one, am extremely humbled by its’ lesson.
Happy New Year. Go ring your bell.