Sunday, September 23, 2012


Last Saturday afternoon I went to the mall to find a birthday present for my husband. I had about two hours to myself before I had to run home and feed the baby before bed. I was frantically hopping in and out of stores, desperate to find the perfect gift. Periodically, I would dip into a children’s store to pick up a couple of new outfits for my three-year old. I was thoroughly drained from a long day of soccer practice, apple picking, and chores. When I passed Brookstone I was very tempted to collapse into one of their inviting massage chairs. After an hour I paused to reassess which stores I would hit next.

“Would you like a sample, miss?” 

I turned around to find myself facing a fancy tea shop and saw a woman holding out little cups of steaming elixir.

 “Are you in a fruity or spicy cinnamon mood?”

Frankly, I had no idea what kind of mood I was in. I hadn’t thought much about myself all day. I had deliberated over the quickest approach to cleaning up my baby’s leaky diaper without missing too much of Big Bro’s soccer game. I had also worried about making sure Big Bro got his apple cider donut that was promised him. I had rushed to do the laundry and make some attempt at cleaning up the living room so that we could at least walk across the floor without tripping over ten different toys along the way. I had considered whether I had the spare time to make it to the dry cleaners or post office, and fretted about the fact that I should have gone to the supermarket to pick up some provisions for the week.

Now here I was being approached by a stranger trying to sell me some overpriced tea, and all I wanted to do was hug her. Someone actually cared what kind of mood I was in.

“Fruity.” It felt really good to say it out loud. As she handed me the miniature cup of tea I took a deep breath and exhaled the stresses from the day. 

“Does this come in tea bags?” I wanted this serene moment where my only focus was enjoying my 1 ½ sips of tea to last forever. As the woman began to offer her very detailed explanation as to why loose tea is preferable, I allowed myself to sink deeper into the moment. I wasn’t tending to anyone else’s needs or stressing about my to-do list, I was just focused on my fruity tea.

I decided to allow myself the remaining minutes I had left to focus on myself and ended up purchasing a couple of cute tops. I left the mall feeling rejuvenated, not from the tea but from taking a moment to check in with myself and what kind of mood I was in.

I just hope my husband appreciates the tea I bought him for his birthday this year.

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