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Last week, in the evening, I decided to take a walk in my neighborhood.  My exercise of choice is usually a run, but on this particular day I ventured on a walk. Spring is abundant everywhere. I noticed the yellow flowers bloomed full in the Palo Verde tree. It is also the one time of year that pink buds blossom from the cacti, the contrast not lost on me, that even amongst thorns, beauty emanates. Sand dusts the sidewalks, birds are chirping, rabbits run alongside my path, and a chilly but comfortable wind lingers in the air.

As my feet hit the cement, I sink into a cadence. On one side, a family of four ride their bicycles in a single-file line, the father moves forward, but periodically looks back to check to see if his daughter is close behind. I catch up to a young mom who is pushing a stroller. She pauses and bends down to check on her baby. Satisfied, she resumes her stride. Because it is evening time, cars are pacing back and forth, the people in them eager to get to their next destination, whether it is dinner with a friend or their family, hitting the gym, or a blind date.

Approaching my own home, I gaze up at the sky and catch the sun setting. A white streak makes a giant u in the periwinkle blue sky. The brilliant yellow, the blackness of the branches, and the interchange between blue and white announce their presence in a way wholly unfamiliar to me. These are fragments that I struggle to notice sometimes because I am caught in a tornado of activity, moving, doing, finishing, and jumping into the next something. It is a chorus that repeats in my life. The idea that restlessness is my addiction.

It takes a walk, solitude, and the power of opening my eyes to understand that sinking into what is around me is the key to climbing out of a trap that I set up for myself. Living exists in these quiet moments. In the noticing.

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