The weather got cooler here, abruptly. Summer was a long season, lasting halfway through October. Then, suddenly, everything shifted and it's cold now. So we are making tea for one another, cupping the mugs between our hands and breathing in the scent with a sigh.
So much is contained in these little, ordinary moments of making tea for each other—so much unspoken knowledge of the other person, their tastes and preferences, their moods and tempers. There is so much solidarity and generosity contained within this act. The wellworn connection, everyday love, small intentions that build my life live in here, in this moment.
To remember things clearly, especially the beautiful little things, I must deliberately savor them, the way I savor a cup of tea on a cool autumn morning. It is not extraordinary to make tea. It is very ordinary. It is extraordinary to mindfully and gratefully remember the ordinary moments when we made each other tea. They tell me who I am: I am a teacher, mother, sister, and friend who is loved and known. I forget that I am all these things sometimes and that they matter so deeply. I'm not sure how, but I do. I get so distracted by my own thoughts and feelings or the clutter of life that almost daily I forget who I am.
So here, right here, I am collecting and savoring these small moments of making tea so I can remember.
I made the boys some tea two days ago while they were toiling away at their schoolwork. I didn't ask them, I just made some. It seemed like they wanted some. I handed them the cups wordlessly, Finnly gave me a little grunt of happy acknowledgement and kept working. Connor looked up in surprise, "oh, is this for me? You didn't have to do this. How did you know I wanted some tea?" I shrugged and said, "I just figured." He said, "thank you," but he held my gaze for a moment longer and his eyes said, "how did you know? You really know me and see me. Thank you, really, thank you." They were so clear and green and surprised. Then he got back to work.
Jenna made me a cup of lavender tea yesterday. She hopped up on the counter to wait for the water to boil in the kettle. She swung her legs over the side the way two-year-old Zelda does when she's happy. We chatted about nothing in particular, our children, husbands, and sisters; the weather; how gentleness takes real strength.
Connor made me a cup of blackberry tea this morning. He nonchalantly asked, "Mom, do you want some tea? I'm making some," he didn't even pause for me to answer before continuing, "which kind do you want? We have cinnamon, blackberry, lavender, passion fruit?" He picked my favorite mug. He handed the cup very tenderly because it was so full, he don't want to spill any. I blew on it, held the cup under my nose and took a big breath in, I smelled blackberries and warmth and it reminded me of high summer, when we went down to the pond to pick blackberries by the quart and then Zelda ate them all with such relish, her face was stained purple and black.
Somehow, holding these cups of tea I am embracing the people I love and connecting to the source of everything.
Collect & savor beautiful little moments. And make someone a nice cup of tea.