There is a pause that exists between every inhale and exhale where time stands still.
Nothing exists beyond that moment, and everything is quiet.
It’s when a sniper takes his shot. It’s when a yogi locks into her posture. It’s when the pianist places his trembling fingers on the keys just before starting to play. It’s when the speaker steps up to the podium with a lump in her throat and a story in her chest that needs to be told. It’s the moment when there is a sharpness and clarity to the world that is palpable. You can feel it in the air and the hair on your arms stands up.
I grew up in Florida, the land of hurricanes. I experienced many of them when I was there, including Andrew, David, and Hugo. Hurricanes always give the perceived luxury of time to prepare before they hit. Time to go to the store for canned goods, bread, and milk, the staple ingredients of any hurricane survival kit. My dad would put our pool furniture in the pool to keep it from taking flight, and board the windows with plywood and tape, and then we would wait for the storm to come. My siblings and I would lay down on the floor of my parent’s room and listen intently for the coming rage of Mother Nature, and when she arrived she would scream.
The wind would howl and thrash the big banana tree branches back and forth in our backyard. The rain would come in sideways and debris would fly through the air, hitting the house, trying to penetrate the flimsy boards covering our windows. And we would sit and wait and listen to the wrath of the storm, worried about whether a corner of the house would collapse, or the roof would be sucked up off the house.
There is a window of time during a hurricane when everything stops. When the eye passes over you and the world is silent. There are no birds chirping, there is no life moving, an eerie quiet passes over. The only sound is the drip drop of water falling from the leaves of the trees. The pause is short, and everything comes in focus-clear. And then the moment passes, and the winds of change and destruction return.
There is a pause between every inhale and exhale when life becomes a bit more clear. When there is nothing but the present. When the world locks into the moment, and everything is in focus. Where the raging winds of change are so quiet you could hear a pin drop. A tiny and sacred, still shot, of a moment. Everything is in line. Everything is flexed and prepared to move. This pause is the birthplace of creativity, of change, of decisions, of choices.
Find it. Harness it. Cherish it. Use it.