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  • Writer's pictureKim Catron

The Ordinary

Updated: May 16, 2021

I have an app on my phone called "1 Second a Day." The idea behind it is to take a picture everyday for a year. The app compiles them into a video for you to watch- 365 seconds of your life. A year of life condensed into a little more than 6 seconds when all is said and done.

I'm failing miserably at it. Think about that. I'm failing miserably at recording one second of my life each day. It's not that I'm too busy (I mean it's only a second). I'm having difficulty finding anything of importance to record. Nothing in my daily life is substantial enough or extraordinary enough to snap a picture.

Some days are easier. But even those don't revolve around me. My son and his girl friend getting elected prom king and queen, my son choosing his college (It's been a big year for him!), a painting my daughter did for me, a breathtaking sunset, brownies (Yes, those triple chocolate Ghirardelli.)

My days are mostly ordinary. I go to school and teach (How many pictures of my messy desk or white board can I take?). I come home and walk on the treadmill (Already took a picture of that. Do I really need another one?). I cook dinner (I'm no chef...there's nothing to see there, trust me.) I work on revisions for my novel (Messy desk picture...personal desk...not classroom desk, check. Picture of revision happening on lap top, check.) I go to bed around 9 and watch Big Bang until I fall asleep. My phone stays downstairs though so I can't take a picture of that. Every other weekend I go to Costco (Oh, I'm glad I just thought of that...Costco dog picture coming up!). I get lots of Diet Coke from soda fountains(I believe I've snapped pictures from Kwik Trip, Holiday, and Mcdonalds, so the soda is taken care of.) Occasionally I do the 2 hour round trip to Dunkin Donuts- snap! Ice coffee picture good (Medium decaf with cream, 2 shots of mocha, 1 shot of unsweetened coconut, 1 shot of toasted almond.) Pictures of me with my glasses perched on the end of my nose, pictures of the dog, cat...yes, yes, and yes.

Years ago I heard a quote about the ordinariness of life. I can't remember it word for word, nor can I remember the author (The internet fails me in tracking it down also.) But essentially is said that life is made up of the ordinary with only a smattering of the extraordinary, and so we must learn to love fully the mundaness of our every day lives because that's where the true living happens.

I'm turning over a new leaf for my 1 Second a Day App and starting on May 1 (although I'll be picking up my daughter who is finishing her freshman year at college AND seeing my niece for brunch...anything but an ordinary day) I'm going to not even look for the extraordinary. I will add a second of my life, whatever that may be.

And perhaps on December 31, 2021, when the app plays back the 365 seconds of my life, I'll wonder, not contemplate, but wonder, revel, in the beauty of the ordinary, the blessings of the ordinary and wonder why I ever thought it wasn't worth recording.

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