I have the privilege of living with a mini master, a mini zen master. I live with three of them actually, although it was the mini-mini who schooled me last night.
She and I headed to my mom's house for an amazing vegetarian dinner. It was lovely on the back deck, white wine in hand, sinking into thick, new patio furniture, the temperature balmy and comforting.
But my mini is not yet 4, so the relaxing lasts only so long. She wants to move and play and whoop and whirl. My mom, the wise woman that she is, thought to pick up a new, soft soccer ball between yesterday's visit and the last time we were there.
The three of us tossed it around on the side yard for a bit, then my mom slipped away to clean up after us. (Thanks, mom.)
My mini and I had so much fun out there. Lots of laughing, lots of silliness. Over and over we tossed that ball back and forth, or kicked it back and forth, or showed each other crazy ball tricks. It was perfection.
But at one point, out of her mini mouth, came the question of the ages:
"Why did you stop smiling, mom?"
That sure did whip me right back to the present moment. The present moment that was so perfect and so deserving of all of my attention, of every synapse-connecting nanosecond.
She nailed me. I was far away, I was spinning out about something else, completely removed from that green grass, that perfect girl, that lovely evening.
I woke up, I moved back into the now, and tossed that ball back with my full concentration. I was back!
It was going good, I was really present, I was; but maybe 3 minutes later she nailed me again.
But this time I had a smile on my face. I knew I did. I made sure I did. But it was not real, it was pasted on - an attempt to fool this girl child. She saw right through me. She knew I was gone from her, could feel that I had slipped away again, to some past event or future moment. I had only fooled myself. The joke, as they say, was on me.
Why do we do this? Why are our minds so slippery, so hard to control, so restless and easily distracted, even though the result is missing out on some of the very best of now?! On moments of beauty that we can never get back?
It was such a good lesson. A perfect example of how not living in the present moment robs us of today. I continuously think I am improving on this concept. Obviously I have a very long way to go. Good thing for me I have multiple mini masters to help keep me on task.