This past weekend, my girls and I walked.
They began Saturday morning by marching with the middle and high school band in our annual town parade as part of the Apple Blossom Festival. It’s a pretty short parade, not one of the grueling marches I’ve seen on some July 4ths, and the weather was pleasant. It is so much fun to see them passing by, concentrating on their instruments, clearly happy to be part of the event.
On Sunday, the girls and I joined two of my sisters, two nieces, and two of my cousins for the annual Lowell General hospital Team Walk for Cancer Care. This was Team Lamarre’s third year walking. Our first was the spring after my Dad died. While he didn’t live long enough to take advantage of the services offered to cancer patients through this center, we learned how important it was to have them. And really, that first year, we were looking for some way to publicly remember Dad. Team Lamarre chose the 6-mile route this year, my sisters and I wanting to push ourselves, feeling we needed to do something a little more. It felt good.
I walk when I am upset. I walk when I feel reflective. My husband and I have some of our best talks while walking. I walk to see the neighborhood and stay connected. “I am alarmed when it happens that I have walked a mile into the woods bodily, without getting there in spirit.” (Henry David Thoreau, Walking) Walking in my neighborhood – or along the beach, or on a conservation trail, or through the city – brings me to the present. I see the world around me more clearly. I see the thoughts within me more clearly. As Thoreau says, I want to bring my spirit with me, present in the steps, and not carry around my worries. Walking helps me think by allowing me to leave my worries behind and be where I am, completely.
I woke up early this morning, and could have taken a short walk. The birds were certainly calling. But I opened the laptop instead and walked across the keyboard. In an ideal world, I would take both types of walks daily.
Lots of others are writing their Slice of Life this morning. You can read them all here.