It was my birthday in the weekend and Sydney turned on spectacularly bad weather for the occasion.
And that was absolutely perfect, as it allowed me to do what I really needed to. Hibernate. Relax. Recharge the batteries. I didn’t need a big celebration or event. I was more than happy to snuggle down with my family and savour the time out.
The highlight of my day was watching a wonderful movie called About Time. With potato chips and chocolate at my side.
It was a movie with great characters and a simple, enjoyable story. Uplifting and emotional, just the way I like my movies on rainy days!
But for some reason, the emotions in the story really triggered me. Tears were flowing with a lot greater volume than you would have expected the plot to produce.
What was going on?
Have you had what experience where life reflects back at you exactly what you need to be reminded of?
The central message of About Time was the need to be present. To be aware of what’s going on around you. To pause and savour the little things in our hectic days. To step outside of your own concerns and worries and preoccupations and to focus on another person.
Focus on someone else. Enjoy the sweetness.
The realisation and recognition hit me. Funnily enough, because of something I did during the week, rather than something I didn’t.
Earlier in the week, my 11-year-old daughter wanted my help with a school project. On the night she asked I was seriously preoccupied. Had a big, fat looming deadline I needed to work on. Was quite honestly, irritated by her request – wasn’t what was on my list more important, more serious than this?
Fortunately that voice inside me, the one I call the Inner Sage, knew better. And she spoke up quietly and with love, but firmly with compassion, about priorities. On this day I listened and made the decision to put aside my work and focus on my daughter.
I’d like to say I manage to make that decision all the time. That every single time my kids ask for my help that I immediately drop whatever I am doing and prioritise them. But that’s so not true!
And it’s also so ok! Sometimes it’s just so not possible. And I’m so not perfect.
But you know what it was that the movie made me realise?
That my daughters love language is time spent together whereas mine is words and emotions shared. And sometimes the different languages we speak means we miss each other.
But on that day, at that moment, I had actually heard her and made the wholehearted decision to respond with the love she needs the most. I consciously choose to became totally present and we had a fantastic time together.
So, I sat on the couch, prompted by the movie, realising that over the days after that particular afternoon, my daughter and I had shared a closer bond. She felt heard and seen. Love had been crackling between us.
And that made my heart smile. That made me realise that I do often get my priorities right.
Savouring the little things. Prioritising with love. Being present.