A Fine Line

Lesson from the universe

I end up in the cashier’s line that I always try to avoid. She licks her fingers when she bags. She gives a bag for a single item. She is really, really slow. I “made that mistake” once.

I’ve been meditating daily for a few weeks now and I finally experience an awareness unlike what I’ve experienced before. “Stay present, Davida. Just notice. Just watch.” I say hello, tell her I’m trying to avoid taking bags (yes, I didn’t bring them in because I came in for a couple things. But you know how that goes. Target). I can see her stiffen. The same reaction as last time. Like she cannot comprehend my not wanting bags…

I notice her finger is bandaged. “Looks like you have a cut,” I say. She replies. “I have arthritis.” Exhale. No wonder she is slow. I feel my body relax. I lean in to the slow.

Item by item I manipulate and reveal the bar code. I’ve noticed that’s the hard part for her. She scans. We’re chatting. I say something inarticulate like “sorry about the arthritis.” She looks directly in my eyes. “No one is exempt from struggle.” Inhale deeply. Before he died, my father always said something similar…..I tell her that. “How old is he?” “Oh, I lost him 8 years ago. He was 81.” “I’m sorry,” she says and starts to apologize for bringing up something difficult…it was ok. I let her know. No one is exempt.

And then I look up at her and we smile at each other. A knowing smile. An “I see you smile.” Like…I really see you.

And I like to think the universe smiled too. Two people out of their comfort zone. Coming together. Connecting. And to think: the line I’ve been avoiding all this time may now be the line I seek. Its a fine line:

“No one is exempt.”