As I turned the timeworn page, it swept over me– An awareness of how precious and short life really is.
In a region of fertile vineyards and quaint villages known as Burgenland, my husband, dad, and I shared 16 days in archives and parishes searching the records that kept the history of the births, marriages, and deaths of our ancestors.
Sometimes we forget that life is perishable. We are each so involved in the details, decisions, and emotions of our own lives. It can be thrilling, fascinating, boring, even frustrating at times.
In the dimly lit archive of Eisenstaedt, sitting next to two of the people I love most, it was calming and beautiful to step back and see the dates representing an entire person’s life, and to think about what really matters. It’s the kind of clarity and perspective I’ve experienced only a few times in my life, and it changed me.
I felt and feel that people matter. Relationships matter. Every single beautiful, messy, precious and perfect life is a miracle.
Having meaningful shared experiences matters to me, so I’m making that a focus of my life. Caring for our little planet and every living thing we share our home with matters to me, so I’m making little efforts every day to do my part.
Sometimes I get distracted by poor mental health, or work that sounds cool but doesn’t really align with my priorities. Offering a gracious no, turning off technology for a few days, getting on the road, immersing in nature, and reconnecting with people I love helps bring me back into focus.
Who or what really matters to you? How does that show up in your life? What distracts you, and what has helped you regain perspective?
Please share with me in the comments below!