I love tea. Probably you do too. How many cups of tea do you drink in a day? Four, ten, twenty?
I love tea for two. Tea with a friend, where, glass after glass, we share our ups and downs. We add sugar in the days when life is good. We avoid it in the days we are feeling sad. We think of children and parents, relatives and common friends. We talk about second chances and recoveries, life’s mysteries and joys.
I love tea for three or four or five. In a bigger group there is more laughter, and maybe more tears. Tea for more than three smells like birthdays and a bride to be, an anniversary or a new job, a new house or a move to a different city.
Around tea you get to know a person, be it in a group of two or ten. However, how many glasses of tea do you need to know a person well? I have new friends now, and I have to say you need more than fifty. You need time to cultivate a friendship and to be able to grasp the person’s struggles and passions, dreams and failures. Would a hundred glasses of tea help? Or a thousand?
Let me confess something. I don’t like to drink tea by myself. It makes me feel lonely. It tastes to an empty house and a one-person-table. It reminds me of the ones who are not near or the ones who have gone away. You see, you can’t hear the voices. You can’t see the smiles or the tears. You can’t smell their fears or taste their success.
Life is like that sometimes. An empty glass of tea. A silent room. A lonely heart.
We, women, don’t feel very comfortable in the silence or emptiness. Granted that sometimes we crave it. If only the kids would give us one hour of peace. If only we could sleep uninterrupted one whole night. But at the end of the day, we need relationships. As women, we need to connect to other people, our friends or our spouse, our children or our sisters.
Fortunately, I have met him. I met him in one of those very lonely days with no tea and no friends. I met him at the bottom of my misery and frustration. I met him when I had decided life was meaningless. In the silence of my heart I heard him say, “Come and talk with me”.
I knew who he was. And I was sure where to find him. He was right there, in the center of my heart, the place where God belongs. So, I answered, “Lord, I am coming”. And you know what? He always has time for tea. Not just one, or ten, but fifty, hundreds, thousands of glasses of tea.
We are getting to know each other. Although he knows everything about me, he doesn’t overuse his knowledge. He waits for my next confession and my next secret. And me? Oh, I know I will need more than a million glasses of tea to discover his heart, but the little bits I see now are so precious I just want to spend more time with him.
He never becomes weary of my voice or my presence. He patiently hears my complaints but also my deepest longings. He sighs when life becomes hard, and laughs when I’m being funny. With him, life can be an endless conversation over a glass of tea. You just need to accept his invitation. You just need to open the door of your heart and prepare some tea.
Would you like to try?
Photo: Thomas Zorroche