” Yoga teaches me to be present”
Present moment mural in Cologne – photo by howlzap Cologne

Presence really is the best present.

It’s Christmas and we focus on presents and I love a great present as much as anyone but it’s not the presents that bring the happy memories as much as the presence with loved ones. It’s even more poignant when cancer surveillance is a part of life. Even though the recent check-up brought good news there’s an ever-present awareness that things can change.

My daughter came back from Spain to spread her presence with us and her friends this festive season and it is the source of great happiness. She brings the Spanish sun with her in her heart and through her smile.

This year I’ve noticed how the ordinary becomes more special in good company:

  • like chatting and being busy preparing festive food
  • like eating, drinking and laughing together
  • like catching up on stories and experiences old and new
  • like Facetiming with family and other friends and who are physically distant
  • like exchanging wrapped / unwrapped tokens of love and friendship

Yoga teaches me to be present. Present with myself in the here and now. Not rushing off with my thoughts into the future or dwelling on and analyzing the past. I can be my own good company making the present more special with my own presence. Owning it and not distancing myself from it.

This practice and experience seeps ever more into daily life. It helps me notice these special moments before they pass and be grateful for them while they are here.

Bringing presence into every day life doesn’t mean you don’t look forward to the future; it brings more appreciation into what is here now. Next month around my fourth cancerversary we’re spreading some presence of our own in England, visiting my parents and valued-great-friends in real life. Being present does work virtually but works so much better in person.