Learning how to live

Last weekend, we took a quick trip to California to visit family. On Monday, we took the kids to Newport Beach. I had no intention of swimming other than sticking my toes in the water.  The temperature was in the 70’s, it was windy, and the water was cold.

After walking around and hanging out, Jeff went in the water.  He came back, sat in a chair and said that the water made him feel alive.  Would I like to go in with him?

My first reaction was predictable. No way!  Too cold.  Swim by yourself.  As he sat there and looked at me, I thought about how I have turned into a person who always seems to do the safe thing, the comfortable thing.  When do I ever take risks anymore?  When do I ever really live?  When do I do the thing that isn’t the easiest choice?

Then I thought about Jennifer. Someone I’ve never met, but who God puts on my heart and in my mind so often. As I pray for her should I not also honor her by enjoying every second of life with my husband?

I looked over to my sweet Mom-in-law who lost her husband very suddenly to cancer two years ago.  I miss my father-in-law every day, but I know that my pain does not compare to hers.  I know that her heart must truly ache in these moments, these special moments at the beach with kids and grandkids, that he is not here. How is saying no to my husband who only wants to play, to experience life with me, honoring her?

So I changed my mind. I said yes, let’s go. We ran towards the chilly water holding hands and screaming. The first time I went under, I came up chattering. I held onto his neck and wouldn’t let go. He stared into my eyes and smiled. We were alive, and thankful.

I’m so glad that I changed my mind and decided to live fully in that moment.

How about you?  When was the last time that you made a choice to live in the moment or to take a flying leap of faith?  I would love to hear about it and even share your story if you’d let me.  If you are currently living in a state of comfort, would you be inspired today to take a risk, to jump into the cold water, to feel alive?

If you had to think of one thing that you have been putting off or saying no to because it is out of your comfort zone, what would it be?  

  • Johanna B September 15, 2011 at 6:16 am

    Thanks so much for sharing that moment with your husband. It’s so easy to sit back and let life pass by unnoticed. You chose life. I am glad. I’ll think of your moment and not make the safe choice next time around.

  • Becca - Our Crazy Boys September 15, 2011 at 9:33 am

    Girl. Your pictures are AMAZING!!!! Way to go with that DSLR!

    And I don’t usually step out. I’ll try, though 🙂

    • inspiredrd September 15, 2011 at 4:39 pm

      Thanks Becca! I am really enjoying the new camera, and trying to learn more about Photoshop.

  • Chondra September 15, 2011 at 9:43 am

    Since losing my brother to brain cancer in 2009, I try to live in the moment each and every day. My husband was recently diagnosed with prostate cancer and had surgery on Tuesday – another sobering life moment. So I feel like I have all these reminders each and every day of how precious life is and how important it is to “Carpe Diem”!!! Seize the Day!

    • inspiredrd September 15, 2011 at 4:40 pm

      I am so sorry to hear about how cancer has affected your life. It definitely has the effect of reminding us to seize each moment. Prayers go out to you and your husband!

  • Lauren September 19, 2011 at 3:54 am

    I will admit I wouldn’t have gone in the water but with the reminders you gave, how can you not? We all say we want to live and enjoy life but then there are all these barriers. Beautiful family, beautiful words. Next time I will swim.

  • Kate @ Songs Kate Sang August 31, 2012 at 9:39 am

    OH! What a very wonderful story. Thank YOU for sharing this! Thank you for linking up at Beautifully Rooted!

  • Andrea September 2, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    Hi Alysa! Just stopped by from Beautifully Rooted to read your full post – I love it! I naturally gravitate to comfort and non-risk taking as well, and am learning to just let inhibitions go and live once in a while! Part of that journey has been walking through the loss of our home to a wildfire last year, and the many living arrangement and employment changes the devastation brought, all inspired by a renewed sense of living in the moment (not always looking for fulfillment in the future), being thankful simply for life, and truly seeking to live our God-given life to the fullest! Right now my flying leap of faith has led me to open an Etsy shop – I see you have one too and I’ll be stopping by to check it out 🙂