Monday, January 11, 2010
Weekly Reflection (week 2): Tea for Two
Today I wish I could enjoy a cup of tea and some time with ... ?
So many ways to consider this question. For enlightenment, I would love to listen to the Dalai Lama; for conversation on parenting as spiritual practice, I think I would enjoy meeting Karen Maezen Miller; for inspiration and great stories, Jane Goodall (I heard her speak once and I loved her stories about the ways her mother encouraged her curiosity and independence); Ringo Starr seems to tell the real story behind the Beatles; and being honest, I would have to add Ewan McGregor because then I could listen to that accent and stare into those blues eyes.
But honestly and seriously, if I could be magically transported to a tea house with a wide open afternoon and anyone sitting across from me, well I would want that person to be my friend Melissa.
I met Melissa during my senior year in college. The first time we did anything as friends we went to the art theater to see the movie Harold and Maude. When my relationship with my boyfriend (now husband) got a little too intense for me, I took refuge in her apartment where we spent many hours in her cozy kitchen drinking tea and talking about feminism, art history (we both ended up going to grad school to study art history; I got my master's degree, but she went all the way and got her doctorate degree), music, books, travel and boys. She taught me to knit, to love cats, and indirectly she helped me to access my feminine side. She was my maid of honor when I got married and I was around for some of her big relationship moments. We wrote each other long, long letters and we made a pact that should anything happen to the other, we each would go and retrieve the others journals before husbands or boyfriends could read them. I loved her like the sister I never had, and was jealous and envious of her and her life which was probably why we had a falling out almost 18 years ago. We quickly had fallen into a deep friendship with each other and as quickly, we fell out.
A few years ago, we reconnected first through letters and then over the phone. While we seem to have smoothed over any differences, clearing the misunderstandings that led to our "break up" (because honestly, a deep friendship is a relationship perhaps more deeply rooted that any love affair), the friendship as we knew it was changed. And to this day I mourn the loss of this special friendship.
So, given the opportunity, I would love nothing more than to have the time to reconnect with this dear friend. To wrap my fingers around a warm mug, snuggle back into a overstuffed chair and move into that magic space where time seems to be suspended, which is what happens when deeply absorbed in listening and sharing with another kindred spirit.
Who would you like to have tea with today? Or is there somebody you would like the chance to reconnect to?