42,048,000 beats of a heart.
What really is a measure of time? Why is there so much importance placed on the ritual of closing out a calendar year and commencing a new?
While it is necessary, in our society, to have the order that a measurement of time brings, be it an hour, a day, or a week; there are days that I ache for simplicity.
The simplicity of rising as the Sun throws light across the land, I do love mornings…and then, after a full day, gently allowing my body and mind to give itself to the night as it envelops me and my surrounds.
This past year, 42,048,000 beats of my heart, I have felt some of that simplicity in very different settings.
I recall the captivation of waking to unfamiliar sounds of nature, deep in the Amazon Jungle. A world away from the familiarity of my sanctuary at Moonta Bay, the warm, damp air filled my lungs. Filtered, golden light streamed through the canopy of gossamer-like netting enshrouding my bed. Magical.
No alarm. No prescribed list of matters to attend to, just the simplicity of being present in a moment in time and woken ever so gently by nature.
I love the simplicity of the change in seasons. One does not need to look at a calendar to know that autumnal stillness is near. You feel it. The heat of summer leaves the earth in a way that you can almost hear the parched soil sigh. The coolness of still, clear evenings under a brilliant southern sky are enough to re-calibrate your body and prepare it for shorter days and to feel enlivened as temperatures begin to tumble.
I love the simplicity of not measuring one’s age by time and a date but rather feeling each stage of life, truly feeling it. Notwithstanding bodily aches and pains, the feeling of love, loss, giving birth, happiness, sorrow, pleasure and pain are by far a better measure of a life being lived than a number, or a date on the Gregorian Calendar.
I love the simplicity of feeling the need to fuel my body, its hunger at times insatiable but mostly understanding the nourishment and nurture it needs to serve its purpose, to allow me to live and to breathe.
I love the simplicity of an impromptu conversation, one that feels like five minutes, but lasts 4,800 beats of a heart (an hour) or more. I love the simplicity of a kiss that may be fleeting, or one that may linger, each not needing to be measured by time but rather by the intensity and intent with which it is given and received.
I love the simplicity of the lines on a face, the scars on a body, the colour and wisdom in eyes, all perfect ways to measure time.
This year, as I am compelled to start a new year, I will be thinking about the beats of my heart, the lines on my face and the wisdom in my eyes and I will allow those attributes to be my measure of time.