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Living Day by Day, Moment by Moment

Whether they formulate in the middle of class as a professor’s voice slowly becomes a mumble, or they meet you in the familiar comfort of your bed, everyone has them - everyone dreams. Some more than others, and for those of us whose minds tend to wander a bit farther than the average, the idea of living day by day, moment by moment may be one of the biggest challenges of living in a different country. When your hands are gripping the safety bars of the Eiffel Tower, or your toes rest at the top of a mountain, it may be easier to concentrate your cares; but what about in daily life, when weeks seem to drag on, your new apartment’s exciting glow has faded out? Dreams are inspirational, liberating, and often pivotal to our decisions, but do they rob us of the riches in front of our eyes?
 This is me taking very careful, slow steps to cross one of the many cliffs found on the Ochre Trail, where I would often stop to observe the beautiful red clay and trees surrounding me!

It’s a sense of being aware; observing the big picture of where you are and who you are with while simultaneously searching to appreciate the finer details. The glistening of sunlight on a showered road, the fluttering of leaves inches from your nose, the chill from inhaling the aroma of the best pizza in town - when these things start to take your breath away, when these exquisite details make you feel contentment with where your two feet currently stand, then you know you are living in the moment. Being anxious about future plans, dwelling on missed opportunities, or doubting that now is a satisfying affair will ironically only cheat you from receiving your opportunity in it’s totality. Instead, living day by day means to have confidence that your future plans will work out, to be thankful for past adventures, but most of all to take a deep breath and enjoy the new culture in front of you.
 A new friend of mine, who wouldn’t stop smiling over the seaglass she collected from a beach in Cassis, France.

Kristen Cole is a CEA alumni. She is studying abroad in Aix-en-Provence during the Spring of 2017 and is currently a sophomore at Point Loma Nazarene University.

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