Noticing the Blue Jay

As I look out my window this morning, the trees blow gently in the breeze and the birds flit joyously among their branches. Yet, what draws my attention is the large blue jay that suddenly darts out of view, his azure plumage whizzing past. Moments later, he returns for only a second or two. He streaks by the window and then disappears for good. I cannot make him come back. (Unless I have a few fresh peanuts I want to part with.) He has simply moved on.

This brief encounter with the blue jay reminds me of how precious time really is. Every day we are given a gift: we wake up and have the opportunity to live this incredible life. Yet, how often are we too busy to really appreciate it? We roll out of bed, exhausted, at the sound of a blaring alarm and then go through the motions of our day, not even stopping to feel the sunshine on our face or the wind blowing through our hair. We are lost in our schedules and our tasks. We don’t notice the squirrels rummaging for acorns or the melody of raindrops that falls from the sky. Do we ever stop to look and listen? Do we ever stop at all? Yet, we cannot get these moments back. We cannot live this day over again. Tomorrow, it is gone forever.

So, why do we rush through life with blinders on? In our haste to get somewhere, we miss the beauty all around us. We can live two miles from the ocean, yet never hear its thundering waves or feel the cool chill of its spray against our skin. There is so much magnificence everywhere. Breathe the fresh air, touch the delicate petals of a flower, and listen to the whispers of the wind. These are all incredible reminders of what we miss in our busy lives. But it isn’t too late. It’s up to us what we choose to see, to feel, and to experience.

Can you take the time to observe the beauty right in front of you? Can you live in this moment right here, right now? Can you appreciate life’s hidden treasures? If so, marvel at the small wonders of this world and don’t forget to smile at the blue jay the next time he drops in.

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