I was eating out with my family the other night in a well known pizza restaurant in Belfast.
As I sat in my chair, sipping my Peroni, I noticed two men sitting together at the table beside us. They didn’t appear to be in a relationship, but instead looked like two men who hadn’t seen each other in a while, who were enjoying sharing a pizza and catching up. I was able to openly study them, as they were so engrossed in conversation, they weren’t noticing anyone else.
As I sat there watching them, I had a moment of wonder; as if I was watching a movie. One man was drinking a carafe of red wine, the other was sipping a beer. They were sharing pizza and salad, and tearing bread to mop up the juices. They really looked to be having a good time. It was the kind of scene that if you were to see it in a movie, it would warm your heart. You would be pulled into the scene and the lives of the characters, and feel as if you were there with them, loving, living and sharing.
What intrigued me about these two men was the intensity with which they were connecting.
Human beings are put on this earth for connection – it is why we are here. But yet connection requires courage and trust in order for it to happen. We must be willing to expose our self – our whole self, if we are to truly experience a deep connection with another person.
Kind of like at the start of a relationship, when you only show your best side. Over time, you feel more confident to show more of your likes and dislikes, as your fear of losing the other person, through exposing your own vulnerability, lessens.
Yet, when we are living superficially and only showing our best side, it is exhausting. Being on “your best behaviour” requires emotional energy and a plastic smile; and it can never be the place where true connection happens.
For when you connect with someone, truly connect, you start to live life fully, and wholeheartedly.
The two men in the pizza restaurant were connecting fully and wholeheartedly, at least so it seemed. Their interaction was genuine and full of courage. And in that moment I realised that the only thing that matters is right now, this second. This is where the magic happens; this is where life begins.
In the words of an old proverb:
Yesterday is gone and tomorrow has not yet arrived.
So live in each moment as if it is your last, and have courage to do it with love and with your whole heart.