Usual. What a typical, boring word. No surprises, no adrenaline. But, walk in to your favorite restaurant–be it fancy with lacy tablecoths and low lit candles or in my case be it the corner grill, when the waitress Eileen glances over before you sit down and says “you want the usual today?” you just feel comforted, known, thankful to be sitting, sharing.
Even if it is the local tavern where the bartender pours your drink when you approach, or the local cashier who smiles and says “hi”, it just feels real, lightens you inside.
My friend Collette, a psychologist, my partner who eats “the usual” with me every couple of weeks says that she finds that people feel greatly empowered when they feel known—really known.
There is a truth in that. There are precious few we show our real selves, always wearing some persona, being who we are but also who we are supposed to be wearing the hat of mother-student-wife-business owner-dog walker. But, people who we see at regular intervals, when we are going about our normal routines, when we are calm, relaxed, even angry, they also know us and some invite us into their space, honestly and openly.
Grasp on to those offerings; they come with no pretenses, and let yourself open for people and experiences. You just might make a friend or learn about others or yourself along the way.
So, “yes, I will have the usual” ,with a smile. C