I was sitting at my office annex (commonly referred to as Starbucks), diligently working on my schedule and planning. With iPad glowing and ear-buds proclaiming that I was fully engrained in “do not disturb” mode, I hardly noticed that they were there. I hardly noticed until their presence was unavoidable.
They were two young ladies, twenty-somethings, who according to their t-shirts worked at a local fast food chain. Accompanying them this morning was a little boy who I learned was almost two. I was aware of his presence because he proceeded to join me at my workstation (a.k.a. “table). He could not have cared less that I was fully engrained in “do not disturb” mode.
He was in the usual mode for a two-year-old boy, which amounts to “there is something on that table that looks like I could break it so I must go near it and see”. As a former two-year-old boy and the father of four of these wonderfully created creatures myself, I have a great appreciation for the two-year-old boy and the world of lessons one can learn from them. This one was unexpected.
The usual suspects at the office annex are people like me. We gather there as the closest of strangers and share in the pursuit of laptops and coffee. We work intently and tenaciously to complete the things that comprise our lists for the day. These are the things that consume our time and energy and resource to fulfill our requirements for success in a given 24-hour period. My interruption’s agenda was different.
In the midst of my business, his agenda was “I am here and I’ll require your attention for the next few moments”. I do admit that much of my initial attention was given because of what appeared to be of the remnants an oatmeal-raisin cookie that were dangerously close to my iPad. This reality was fleeting.
My attention soon moved from my obsessive-compulsive need to remain in the realm of the “non-sticky” to the reality that there was this little person that simply wanted to engage in conversation and relationship. The fact that I couldn’t understand what he was saying mattered only to me. He talked and pointed and in his mind made perfect sense. It wasn’t his fault that I only speak the dialect of two-year old that originates in my own home. But as quickly as he came he was gone. Mom had to get to work. He had an important 10 o’clock with Clay at day-care. I had to get back to my planning. The moment had run its course.
The lesson is simple. Take a moment to listen to the wisdom of a cookie covered two-year old. He may teach you more that you think you need to know about reality. You really do have the time. The world and your agenda can wait. Your project is not so important that it can’t wait just a moment to talk to a sticky little kid. Trust me… and my new little friend.