In the Oscar-winning film, Titanic, steerage-class character Jack Dawson dines in first-class with some of the world’s wealthiest movers and shakers. When he is asked about how he makes his way in the world, in light of his poor social and financial standing, he makes it clear that he sees his life as rich. He explains that he has all that he needs within himself and with what is at hand, namely: his art supplies and the surroundings of each moment.
“I figure life’s a gift and I don’t intend on wasting it,” says Dawson, and he commits to making each day count.
Dawson’s perspective reminds me of my brother, Keith, and his particular way of “making each day count.”
About 5 years ago, Keith started what he calls his “photo of the day” practice. It began when Keith had an epiphany experience–one that we all have when we realize that much time has passed in our lives.
That wake-up experience led Keith to take one photo each day, in a certain way. His intention was to pause, savor a moment, and honor it by recording it. While some of his photos capture sunsets, record his garden in bloom, and show his dogs at play, many are reminders of seemingly mundane moments: a sunny-side egg frying in a pan, a just-poured glass of beer, water flowing from the shower head.
“It’s not about waiting for peak experiences or the high-points each day,” says Keith. “I just want to stop and appreciate ordinary moments.”
He explains that, now and then, he really “gets it” that there are no ordinary moments. They’re all magnificent.
Deep down we all know this. But we forget.
May we become better and better at remembering.