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I am just enough of a space geek to do things like travel to Florida THREE TIMES before finally getting to see a shuttle launch, read books called Packing for Mars: The Curious Science of Life in the Void, and stay up late to watch the lunar eclipse complete with blood moon last night, but not enough of a space geek to learn the math required to study its intricacies and physics properties.  I know my limitations, people.
It was a warm spring night and as I settled in to a patio chair at about 1 am, the only sound was the hum of traffic on a far away road and birds chirping their nighttime songs.  After I refused to play fetch with him, the dog chewed his rawhide bone while the cat leaped into my lap and snuggled up against my chest.

The quietness of the experience was beautifully soothing.  Early in the evening, the moon had been bright white and full.  Many hours later, as it rose in the night sky and the eclipse began, a sort of etherial quality enveloped the whole back yard, like when you’ve turned off all the lights to quietly await the arrival of the surprise party victim.

I was glad that the occasion of a lunar eclipse afforded me the opportunity to sit quietly and just BE.  This is something that is unfamiliar to me lately, but so necessary.  So many things on my To Do list.  So many connections to make for business and friendship.  So many people to reach out to.  Even when I can’t see it, the list swirls inside my head like debris caught in a tornado.

But this.  This was a moment.  No connections to make, no emails to send, no status to check.  There was only scratching the cat behind his ears and gazing at a sight like this:

 

Photo courtesy CNN - photographer: Tiffany Chee-Stalnaker

All I had to do was observe this beautiful illustration of the handiwork of God, spelled out in the alignment of the cosmos to produce perfectly precise shadows on the moon.  It was a private moment – just me & God, the dog and the cat.  And yet, the knowledge that it was a moment shared with humans all over the world made it somehow more epic than if I’d just sat there enjoying the quiet on any other night.

It was good to be reminded that when I allow myself the luxury of moments like this, I am more grounded. To step away from myself from time to time and soak in whatever is in front of me enlarges my world in a way the world wide web cannot.

You might say I experienced a total eclipse of my mind.