Dance At Your Own Pace

July 8, 2011
Do you listen to the beat of your own drum or feel you have to keep up with the activities of others?

File:Relaxing row in the park - geograph.org.uk - 1370417.jpgWhat did you do on July 4th? Did you have a big event with lots of friends, food and fireworks? Or did you spend it pretty much with yourself — as I mostly did — creating a blog post in your home office, taking breaks by reading a chapter of an enjoyable book, watering plants on your deck, and not feeling compelled to spend time with anyone else?

Of course, my husband was here for part of the day, but he went a hike I could not have kept up with, and the rest of the time he was napping or  playing computer games.

I was thinking of this when I came across a poem apparently written by a little girl with cancer in which she (or he) expresses the idea that you can miss an awfully lot of life if you aren’t paying attention to the little things, like “rain slapping on the ground or watching a butterfly’s flight.” Life is over far too soon.

But I would add that only you know whether you are going too fast or too slow.  Only you know whether a holiday spent very peaceably by yourself is just what you need, or whether you should push yourself to attend a picnic with lots of people you don’t know. Both have their own rewards.

You have often heard about someone “marching to the beat of his own drum.” Well, I think that we all have a drum with a rhythm just for us. If we pay attention and listen to the beat, we will know whether we need to slow down or speed up.

Some people prefer a jitterbug and others a waltz. Whatever dance you choose, make certain you will enjoy doing it.

As you read this poem, which is called Slow Dance, notice whether it speaks to you.

Have you ever watched kids
on a merry-go-round
Or listened to the rain
slapping on the ground?
Ever followed a butterfly’s erratic flight
Or gazed at the sun into the fading night?

You better slow down
Don’t dance so fast
Time is short
The music won’t last

Do you run through each day on the fly
When you ask “How are you?”
do you hear the reply?

When the day is done,
do you lie in your bed
With the next hundred chores
running through your head?

You’d better slow down
Don’t dance so fast
Time is short
The music won’t last

Ever told your child,
We’ll do it tomorrow
And in your haste, not see his sorrow?

Ever lost touch,
Let a good friendship die
Cause you never had time
to call and say “Hi”?

You’d better slow down
Don’t dance so fast
Time is short
The music won’t last

When you run so fast to get somewhere
You miss half the fun of getting there.
When you worry and hurry through your day,
It is like an unopened gift,
Thrown away.

Life is not a race.
Do take it slower
Hear the music
Before the song is over.

How does this poem resonate with you?

Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

One thought on “Dance At Your Own Pace

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