There’s something to be said about sitting back and having a hot drink. Making tea or coffee is something we do every day, often when we’re half asleep in the morning or in a rush on our lunch breaks between classes or work. It’s so rare we sit down and enjoy the process of making a hot drink.
Tonight (or should I say this morning seeing as it’s 1am at the time of writing this) I made myself some herbal tea and sat down at my desk to journal. Why I felt compelled to write was beyond me, but after half an hour of composing my thoughts and silencing my mind I sat back in my chair and reached for my drink.
I noticed it was warm, an odd thing to point out because of course it’s warm, it’s a hot drink. But what I mean is that I really noticed it. I felt how the heat slowly moved into my hands, how the ceramic cup felt heavy. Without realising it I’d came to a pause, lost in the moment of noticing how something as mundane as reaching for a hot drink really felt.
It was quite possibly the longest hot drink I’ve ever had, not because it was scolding hot and I couldn’t take a sip in fear of burning myself, but because I spent the time to really pay attention to every single moment. When I took a sip I made an effort to feel the liquid on my lips, to let my mind linger on the taste of it and to try and track each mouthful as it traveled down my throat.
It was peaceful.
Since starting my masters my life has felt like it’s been going a million miles an hour. Going from one three hour lecture to the next, writing up notes, doing the required reading before class, forming opinions on the topic at hand because I can guarantee my tutors aren’t going to let me sit at the back and not say a word has left me exhausted. The on top of that I’m working part-time as well as building up my own copywriting business. Then there’s the small fact that I’m working with a publisher for my upcomming poetry collection!
In no way do I regret undertaking my masters but I can say with confidence that I wasn’t prepared for the task it was going to be. I did well in my undergraduate degree but even that didn’t prepare me for this academic year.
I find it interesting how for the first time in weeks it was a hot drink, something I have several of a day, that finally got me to slow down and rest.
I’m a poet at heart and the writing student in me is desperate to find meaning in that. Perhaps there isn’t one, I don’t know. But what I do know is that there seems to be something in the mundane acts that we carry out everyday. I have a hot drink on the desk every time I study and maybe I can use that as a tool. What if once every study session I take a few moments to pause, sit back in my chair and really notice how the simple act of drinking a coffee feels and check in with how I’m really doing in that moment.
I wonder if anything would change.