I want to tell you about Darla.
But first, let’s talk about coffee.
Years ago, Life kept telling me in strange ways to give it a chance.
Sitting at a McDonald’s when a manager comes out of nowhere to give me a free one.
Winning coffee at the gas pumps multiple times when I didn’t even know that was a “thing”.
Winning a full size coffee maker at a fundraiser when I had my eyes on everything but.
Eventually, I gave in and soon realized what all the fuss was about.
I don’t know about you but:
Coffee uplifts and warms me all over.
Each sip reminds me of how awesome Life is.
One cup turns the ordinary moment into an extraordinary one.
Well, people can do that too.
Darla is one of those people.
She’s the happiest server I’ve ever encountered in a restaurant.
When she smiles big at 6 a.m. and says, “Good Morning!”, you know she means it.
Darla is fully present even when she’s the only server in a Perkin’s full of customers during breakfast rush.
She’s not bothered.
And if she’s tired, she certainly doesn’t show it.
She remembers me no matter how long it’s been and sincerely asks when I’m coming back.
Darla carries herSelf with the excitement of someone working their very first day.
Yet, she’s been at the same Perkin’s for almost 30 years.
Turns out, we attended the same college but she left before graduation to take care of her Mother.
She told me this intimate part of her life without an ounce of bitterness.
Without a hint of regret, she said she was planning to be a teacher.
Darla is an uplifter.
She’s someone you look forward to seeing.
Our interactions always lead me to check-in on my own:
Am I fully present with others?
Do I uplift the people I’m talking with?
Would others describe me as “warm”?
Do people look forward to interacting with me?
What energy do I give off?
I’d encourage you to do the same.
If you don’t like your answers, that’s okay.
You can always choose to show up differently.