There has never been a day like today, nor will there ever be another day like this one — and I’m not just saying that in a motivational speaker-y kind of way.
Monday, September 20th 2021 has come, and if you let it, it will go like any other unremarkable second-last-day of summer, like any other Monday you can’t wait to come to an end so Friday is within your line of sight again.
But wait. Better put, don’t wait (to live, that is).
In a world where most of us are clamoring to feel acutely alive — not just invariably fixed in autopilot — can we really afford to let a precious day go by without paying it attention to it? Without seeing it as a chance to live our lives more fully? Without taking it for granted, like we tend to do with our days and weeks and months? Without doing something simple + silly (like having chocolate chip waffles for breakfast instead of the same-old, same-old), just to make the day stand out amidst a calendar of 365 blend-together days?
Right before the plague, The Husband and I traipsed around the WNDR Museum in our winter boots, looking for anything close to wonderful on a frozen Chicago Saturday. This 10-foot-high quote by Joseph Campbell (despite the hideous fluorescent accent lighting) was worth the price of admission:
Today is your opportunity to have the experience of being alive… to feel the rapture of being alive.
Today is the most suitable time to live with a little more intention because today is really all you have. (Yesterday is just a bunch of photos in your phone and memories you can barely hold onto, and tomorrow — well. Don’t even get me started on tomorrow.)
What if today is the last Monday you have to live (HOLY SHIT SHE TOOK IT THERE)? You could kick the bucket tomorrow and if for some reason a time-lapse video of your last 24 hours was played on an iPad as you waited in line for heaven/ eternal damnation/ wherever you think you’re going, would your Monday look dull and colorless or would it be in vivid color?
Descriptive words about your day to AVOID at all costs:
Descriptive words about your day to maybe seek out if you’d like to feel more alive:
Today is your chance to live an anti-mundane Monday.
To be clear, this isn’t about getting hopped up on Mountain Dew and skipping work to parkour all over the place in a valiant attempt to LOOK ALIVE OUT THERE (unless that’s your favorite thing to do).
Just as beauty is in the eye of the beholder, “feeling the rapture of being alive” is different for each person doing the living. You might come alive reading a chapter over lunch, while the woman at Whole Foods in front of you might have an anti-mundane Monday by cooking an unreasonably spicy dinner with a ghost pepper. Yohan in your office might wake up to life by working on a creative project, while Yolanda might feel the rapture by planning a Zion hiking trip. Planning counts, too! I signed The Husband and myself up for tennis lessons this week and got a jolt of aliveness just by pressing the “BOOK IT” button.
Aliveness is relative and there isn’t a right or wrong way or amount to live, as long as you’ve committed to being alive instead of a highly functioning zombie.
Aliveness tends to deflate when we compare our experience of being alive with someone else’s, so let’s agree to feel inspired by other people’s un-deadness, rather than judged for our lacklusterosity (my favorite new made up word).
Make today count. Prove to yourself that you’re alive, and go seek out even the smallest amount of rapture. Life’s too short to not eat chocolate chip waffles more often.