A Pint and a Cup of Tea
Take a pause
A couple months ago I was visiting our daughter in London. She told me of this beautiful hotel/restaurant she often visited have a pint and work on her blog. She asked me if I wanted to go. When your 26 year old daughter invites you to go somewhere you go!
As we sat at a high top table me sipping tea and she a cider in a posh restaurant in Kings Cross working on our blogs (just love the sound of that). When I first walked in I was in awe - the ceilings were incredibly high, the décor was impeccable and I felt like we took a step back in time. However I noticed after we were working for a bit and I got sucked into my writing my surrounding fell away. We were both typing away and in that moment I realized we could have been sitting in Panera in Allentown and that seemed like such a waste.
Without a pause and a moment of awareness the opulence of the room would have been lost on me. But, in that moment of awareness, I brought myself back into the now - I grounded myself by noticing the hard wooden high top chair I was sitting on, my feet resting on the rung of the stool and I when I lifted my head I could see my beautiful daughter across from me. In that moment it was as if time stood still. I became so aware of how full my heart was with gratitude having time to spend her - you know that feeling when your heart swells like the Grinch at Christmas.
As I sat quietly, I noticed the many languages being spoken, and the warm cup of Earl Grey tea I was sipping. A pause is such a simple thing and yet it takes practice. We seems to be able to notice the tough stuff and when things aren't quite going our way, and that is how we are wired with that negative bias. But with a little practice we can learn to sit and savor the good stuff and let go of the negative.
I wonder how often I miss those precious moments because I am thinking of things that need to be done or my mind is lost in anywhere but here. In a simple pause I was back in the hotel with my wonderful daughter and I didn't want to miss a minute of it.
The same experience was a simple direction of walking a bit then stopping an noticing something at a silent retreat I ran a couple days ago. In the talk afterwards the participants related how the simplest things became so rich - string cheese tasted divine, the songs of the birds so unique, the warmth of the sun was luscious, and a simple flower, that later turned out to be poison ivy, colors were described as beautiful and vibrant.
So next time you take a step outside, I would invite you to pause - take a moment and enjoy what mother nature has to offer.
With a simple pause your surrounding may surprise you.