As I walked between buildings this morning with my face in my smartphone and my head filled with project deadlines, housekeeping minutiae, goals and dreams and regrets that make up the miasma that sublets my head, a red rosebud caught my attention. I turned off the phone for a second.
I took a deeper breath and pushed it down through my tense muscles, all the way to my feet. My feet sent back the message that I was walking on a pebbled path made of gentle curves, passing under five old oak trees. My brain wafted down the word “psithurism”–the word for the sound that wind makes in trees. I couldn’t help but smile.
At the end of the path, I stopped on the sidewalk to let a car pass, even though I had the right of way at the crosswalk. Reflexively, my mind clicked over to berating the car’s driver for not seeing me…but I stopped and chose to breathe again. I lifted my eyes, and this is what I saw:
Such a surprise, to SEE the sky and accept with grateful wonder that I get to live in a place on a day in a moment when that color is right there for me to see. No charge, no ticket required, no restrictions apply.
At that moment, what words popped into my head?
“This blue sky is not beautiful BECAUSE of anything. It just IS. It is and it is beautiful.
Not because I have a job.
Not because my clothes match and smell nice.
Not because my son’s potty training is on or off track.
Not because the scale said a certain number.
Not because I met that deadline.
Not because I wrote today or slept last night or ate the right balance of carbs to protein or remembered to take the school supplies to the teacher. All those things that fill my mind have nothing whatsoever to do with this blue sky that brings me such delight.
And no self-respecting Georgia Girl could dive into a sky like that without humming “Blue Sky” by The Allman Brothers. Here’s one of only five recordings of “Blue Sky” from the glory days of the brothers, the band, the Betts. This version was recorded live in 1971 at SUNY Stonybrook. It’s long, because it was the 70s. Worth every single second–breathe your way through it instead of playing Candy Crush or worrying about carbs.
“You’re my blue sky, you’re my sunny day. Lord y’know it makes me high when you turn your love my way. Turn your love my way…” Click the photo of the band if you’d like to go back to that day: