One of the delights of being a college consultant is that I learn new things every day from the wonderful students that come into my life. They share their thoughts, offer a view into their various cultures around the world, and give me things to think about.
Some time back I was working with a young woman on her college application and she listed her favorite word as Adsum. She clarified that it is a Latin word meaning to be present. How lovely! I was both delighted and saddened because too much of my life I’ve been absent.
I’m one of those duty-bound people whose eyes are constantly on the horizon, measuring, preparing, scoping out what is in front of those in my charge. I take my obligations very seriously and the to-do lists are everywhere. That trait is one of the reasons I’ve been a successful as a parent and in my profession. It has also caused me to often miss the moments unfolding right in front of me. I’d like to change that. I want to do a better job of being present.
Most of you reading this are in the middle of incredible responsibilities with children and schedules and commitments. There aren’t enough hours in the day to get everything done. Sometimes it seems that your energy won’t last to the end of each evening. However, I can tell you from experience that these years will pass in a heartbeat and the little moments can never be recaptured.
The delightful word Adsum is written on a card and now occupies a prominent place on my desk. It reminds me to focus on the here and now, to notice the little things, to be completely present. Will you join me?