Yesterday’s Tomorrow

“Tomorrow comes into us at midnight very clean.
It’s perfect when it arrives and puts itself in our hands.
It hopes we learned something from yesterday.”
Marion Robert Morrison (John Wayne)

“Tomorrow, I’ll take better care of myself.”
“Tomorrow, I’ll make smarter choices.”
“Tomorrow, I’ll get enough sleep.”
“Tomorrow, I’ll pursue healthier relationships.”
“Tomorrow, I’ll work on being a better human being.”
At this moment, while you’re reading this, you’re living out yesterday’s tomorrow. This is the tomorrow you dreamed about.

I walk out onto the deck and felt small in the vastness of the dark, still cold, spring sky. I bade farewell to today—to yesterday’s tomorrow—and looked forward to a new twenty-four hours of doing and being.

I simultaneously recognize the fruitfulness of having a plan and the futility of planning too far ahead. When we keep holding up placards listing tomorrow’s agenda, we’re putting a lot of pressure on ourselves. No wonder we’re living in a country where millions of people are being treated for anxiety. Apprehension about what we’re “supposed” to do can be overwhelming.

Bright, white stars disguised as diamonds became the show; the silence was interrupted only by a far-away train. In the stillness, I felt the yesterday and saw the tomorrow. I understood the Svengali-like power that tomorrow offers, insidiously encouraging us to let go of today in favor of it:
a tomorrow that beckons with promises of better.

If we keep telling ourselves our “plans for tomorrow” but don’t act on them, we create a pattern of not trusting ourselves to do what we say we’re going to do.

It’s similar to a familiar parenting situation: the parent tells the child repeatedly that if she does (or doesn’t) do ABC, then XYZ will happen. If she does (or doesn’t) do ABC and XYZ doesn’t occur, then pretty quickly, she’ll realize that it’s just smoke and mirrors.

We’re often like that child thinking, “I knew you really weren’t going to follow through and actually do that.” Then we look at ourselves in the mirror and answer, “yep, you’re right, it sounded good, but I wasn’t worth it.”

Tomorrow calls to you and then taunts you with promises of meeting unfulfilled desires. Fears—trivial and significant—take over.
Our days become paralyzed, mercurial blips of time, where the vicissitudes of the day cause dormant dreams to go on the “tomorrow” list again.

So, how do we wrap our arms around yesterday’s tomorrow? How do we regain control? Ultimately we have two choices.
1. Make only promises to ourselves that we honestly want to fulfillplan to honor, and have the ability to create.
2. Decide to accept each day as we receive it and then live fully into it without judgment, preordained ultimatums, or condescension.

Aspirations are great
Self-awareness is crucial.
Good intentions are excellent.
Losing every today in anticipation of a not-guaranteed tomorrow can be disastrous.

The sky is painted with clouds on a light blue background in yesterday’s tomorrow. Birds take flight. The world comes alive. Unlike last night’s still, piercing quiet, the howling, whirling wind announces loud and clear, “I’m here; pay attention to me.”  

The baton has been handed to you.
The choices are yours to make.
The next minute will be created no matter how you use it.
Today is the canvas you have to work with.
May it bring you immeasurable blessings and spirit-filled joy.
Kay


©peace full home™/intentional living, kay malloy mclane

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