A couple years ago, my girl Dusti asked her Twitter followers what makes them feel beautiful. I responded, “I feel beautiful when I feel alive.” Two years later, this post of hers popped into my mind out of the blue as I considered what it means to feel alive. I have felt my soul waken more in the past couple years than my the rest of my teenage & adult life. Passion and fire has been ignited. I feel alive. So, I posted the following question for my friends to answer:
What makes you feel alive?
These were their responses:
Walking through cemeteries.
Seeing the love I poured into the world come back to me.
Helping others, healing animals, and providing healthy feed.
Seeing beauty in the simple things in life.
A lot of things makes me feel alive; however, there’s one thing that reaches the innermost part of my soul is ‘forgiveness,’ which is both forgiving and being forgiven. This activity really frees me to enjoy everything else.
All kinds of things. Pain makes me feel alive. Love makes me feel alive. Any time you step outside your comfort zone gives you a heightened sense of awareness. Breathing. All good things.
Attending Mass on Sunday, getting a reply from a “famous” person on Facebook who I sent a fan email to, visiting with church family in my home.
Reading the word of God… lately, especially in Isaiah!
Just waking up in the morning and looking out the window to a beautiful sunny day overlooking the mountains.
Smiling at someone and getting a smile back, a hot shower, singing, dancing.
Working out and stretching used out of my comfort zone.
I absolutely loved reading all these responses. This simple question not only made me think more about being present and on fire in a world that likes to push us down, but opened up my eyes more to these people in my life that gave me these answers. Simple words helped me learn more about them. They hit the core of what makes them them.
The other thing that hit me about these responses is what they were — connections with people, visiting favorite places, worship, positive actions. No one felt alive because of their closet full of clothes. No one felt alive because of their brand-new car. People feel alive because of connections. Because they get up and do something. They step outside. They are passionate.
So, if these are the kinds of things that make us feel alive, then why aren’t our days centered more around these things? Why aren’t we carving out more time in our lives for these bursts of happiness? Why are our passions falling to the side? Why are so many people focused on things, on gossip, on money, on anger?
Why can’t we peel off our layers, take off the masks, and just live? Just b r e a t h e.
What makes you feel alive?