My hair stylist, Holly, shared a story with me today about her young daughter.  She told me that when her daughter was three she would come up to her and grab her face in her little hands and look her straight in her eyes and say; “Are you here Mommy, I am here, are you here?”

It dawned on her a few years later, as she was taking workshops on being present with Leonard Jacobsen, that her daughter was asking for full attention and presence.   The child was present and wanted her Mommy to be present with her.  Out of the mouths of babes comes such wisdom.

Am I here?  Am I fully present in each moment?  The answer, unfortunately, is no.  I miss out too often as I drift off into thought, concern, judgement or worry.  I leave the bliss of the moment and drift into the unsatisfying haze of thought.  Thought is a distraction from presence and takes me into the past or forward into a future that I can’t know for sure.  Either way, I am gone.

Joy is experienced now and only in the now.  It doesn’t exist in the past or future.  We might remember a joyful moment or look forward to future of joy, but that is not the same as experiencing joy.  I can only be joyful now.  Thank you, Holly, for the inspiration and the great haircut. It brought me joy to be present with you today!