This afternoon I bundled up for a walk with Louie. I threw on my dad’s hoodie sweatshirt, which usually hangs comfortingly on the back of my bedroom door (I’m not really one for sweatshirts – I’ve saved his purely for sentimental reasons).

Having it on under by coat felt like a warm hug. It felt like I was taking him with me.

As I was pulling into the parking area of our favorite spot, I thought of a cartoon I saw a while back. I tried to google it just now but couldn’t find it. Anyway, it depicted a man and his dog out for a walk in the woods. They each had a thought bubble over their heads. The man’s thought bubble was filled with a dozen things that were on his mind. The dog’s thought bubble simply had an image of the man and the dog walking in the woods. The dog was thinking about exactly what they were doing.

The caption was, “Why  dogs are happier than people.”

I don’t know if the cartoonist was deliberately illustrating the benefits of mindfulness, but nevertheless, to me it was a well made point. No one is more “in the moment” than a dog.

My mind is busy most of the time (often too busy, in my opinion). Getting out in the woods usually does wonders in clearing my head…if only for a little while.

The woods bring calm, and it really is in the form of mindfulness. I notice and appreciate the changing canvas through the seasons – the carpet of leaves, the newly bare trees, the joy in my dog.

Sometimes I am stuck on something that I can’t let go and I need to process, and the fresh air does help…but I most enjoy a walk when I can just be there in body and in mind.

Today was one of those days. I am grateful.

 

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