Right now


On Friday night, I attended a memorial service of a dear friend in Seattle.  While there in the church pew, celebrating the life of and grieving the loss of this amazing woman, another friend took my hand and placed it on her pregnant belly to feel the baby kick.

One friend is giddy about a new love interest in her world.  Another is dreading the inevitable breakup she will soon have to initiate.

And after a gorgeous spring day – the kind that confirms that Seattle is the most beautiful city on the planet, and nudges my spirit saying, “Remember what it’s like to smile?” and in which I got sunburned cheeks from being outside at Green Lake and along the waterfront of Shilshole – I spent the evening with, and felt the incomprehensible sadness of, my sweet friend who is living in the ruins of having lost a child.

Death and life, the end and the beginning, profound joy and severe pain; contrasting events juxtaposed in the most poignant way.  It made me feel so small.

And I was re-reminded: the only way to find life is to live in the present.  To be emotionally gutsy enough to feel whatever we need to feel, come what may.  To attempt to live in gratitude, no matter the disappointments or frustrations or non-ideal circumstances.  To find the gift in the “right now” – because life, ready or not, is going to hold a vast spectrum of events, emotions, stages, chapters, seasons.

We have to be present.  We have to.  Because in this life, longing is inescapable – but to be available right now is to be open to hope right now.



  1. karlie on May 18, 2009 at 10:54 AM

    i really like this thought. it reminds me of a quote by Rainer Maria Rilke:
    “Let everything happen to you
    Beauty and terror
    Just keep going
    No feeling is final”

  2. AnnieBlogs on May 18, 2009 at 1:38 PM

    Amen sister. Proud to share a name with someone who writes this well AND lives this well.

  3. Casey on May 18, 2009 at 6:16 PM

    YES MA’AM!!!

    We rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn- that’s what we do. And that’s what friends do with us when we’re in those seasons as well, thank God for the whole-ness of experience in your weekend and in life.

    Gotta love that about Seattle.

  4. annie on May 18, 2009 at 7:36 PM

    AnnieBlogs stole my comment. But I’m going to say it anyway: Amen sister!

  5. FW on May 18, 2009 at 8:43 PM

    Well thought, well written, and well lived, Annie.

  6. Brooke on May 18, 2009 at 9:46 PM

    Live. Everyday. Just live and experience it all – the good the not so good – because it’s all part of the great big tangled beautiful mess of life.

    Thank you for articulating the things that sometimes get jumbled up in my heart.

  7. Mandy on May 18, 2009 at 10:58 PM

    I’m sure you’re told this all the time, but you are a phenomenal writer. I couldn’t have said this better. Thank you for reminding me to love my life AS IS RIGHT NOW and worry about the little things later.

  8. Carin on May 19, 2009 at 9:01 AM

    Gusty and present.
    Two words that describe you.
    Thank you for being both with me.
    I was grateful to be with you.
    Lv, CT

  9. Erica Tober on May 19, 2009 at 12:18 PM

    Ahhh, this post hits home for me. Live in the moment. Sounds so simple but really isn’t, is it? I need to work on that.

  10. Diana on May 19, 2009 at 10:09 PM

    My favorite quote in the world:

    “Live with intention.
    Walk to the edge.
    Listen hard.
    Practice wellness.
    Play with abandon. Laugh.
    Choose with no regret.
    Appreciate your friends.
    Continue to learn.
    Do what you love.
    Live as if this is all there is.”
    ~Mary Anne Radmacher

    I first read that during a very ‘numb’ time in my life – and, of course, I KNOW that there is more to come after this life… but living to the fullest happens when we can appreciate this life for all that it is.
    {sent with much love!}

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