A Moment of Mindfulness

I finally made it to my airplane seat. Normal fare… tired, rushed travelers, journeying their separate ways, ready to reach their final destinations. It was an older, dirty plane with as many unpleasant smells as there were travelers. It was loud and chaotic, with a sense of malcontentedness. I sat down and squished myself between two strangers and braced myself for the uncomfortable ride home.

Before catching my flight, I came directly from my grandmother’s memorial service, just minutes away from the airport. I watched as my 6 aunts and uncles mourned their last parent, their mother. They stood over her casket with sadness weighing on their hearts and eyes overflowing with tears. I sat on the plane, half-tired, half-shocked at what I had just witnessed over the past few weeks…

My father, aunts, uncles, and cousins saying goodbye to our much loved matriarch. While at the memorial service, I was able to break off a yellow rose from the floral arrangement placed on her casket and held the stem tightly in my hands all the way to the airport. In a way, it made me feel like I was holding one last piece of her, as she always loved flowers.

As I sat in my seat, I took a moment and looked at the bright, beautiful rose. The beauty drew me in to itself. I slowly lifted the rose to my nose to deeply inhale its fragrance. In… out… in… and out. The smell of its rich sweetness swiftly grabbed my attention from the all-encompassing unpleasant surroundings to solely focus on it. I inhaled the flower’s smell a second and third time, continuing to breathe it in over and over. It amazed me how the rose’s intoxicating aroma was able to bring me wonderful moments of respite, transcending my surroundings, and creating a sense of quiet peace in me. What the rose gave me was a sense of beauty and bliss in the midst of absolute pain, chaos and discomfort. I continued to focus in on it’s loveliness and take in its smell for the duration of the flight, staying in awe of the beauty it provided me in that brief amount of time, when I needed a hefty dose of it.

Such is true in life. We can often be found in places we would rather not be, with people who are not our favorite, or even downright unpleasant companions, or a multitude of other trying circumstances. In those instances, we can make the decision to choose to focus on the negatives or take a moment to observe our surroundings and find the beauty in it. It is there if we look hard enough.

Happy seeking!
Jennifer Heggem

5524 Bee Caves Rd, Suite K4
Austin, TX 78746