About two years ago, the rate of new blog posts to presentation zen declined a bit. It was not for a lack of ideas; I have folders full of ideas and samples that I would like to share. However, two years ago this April something extraordinary happened (well, extraordinary for my wife and me at least): our first child, a girl, was born in Osaka. And last week, our second child, a boy, was born in the same hospital (photo right). It's a cliché to say, but children change everything.
Immediately upon holding my girl for the first time 23 months ago, I felt as if I had somehow fundamentally changed. This study suggests that perhaps my brain was even changing: "A father sprouts supplemental neurons in his brain and experiences hormonal changes after the birth of a child." While my passion for work and keen interest in self-development and teaching and helping others with presentations, etc. did not decline in the least, I found that more and more things — everything, really — took a back seat to the simple concept of just being with my daughter (and now son as well). I still get frustrated sometimes because I do want to work more, but I also do not want to be away from family. One important thing my children have taught me is to appreciate each moment, even the seemingly inconsequential ones.
This slide above with a 16:9 aspect ratio features a photo from this week that tells a story. I was having my morning breakfast while trying to get through some email at home while my 23-month old daughter, who I already fed, bathed and dressed, was playing nearby. While I was trying to get some work in and enjoy a cup of coffee, my daughter suddenly climbs up into my lap and takes my toast. Do'h! I could look at it as a kind of workus interruptus, but I have learned to just go with the flow and enjoy these moments. Of course, this explains why my email-answering skills have suffered. And yet, c'est la vie.
This moment will never happen again
Ichi-go ichi-e (一期一会) is a concept connected to the way of tea. Roughly translated the phrase means "one time, one meeting" or "one encounter; one opportunity" or "every encounter is a treasure." It is an idea that reminds us of something all too obvious but often not recognized. That is, that no moment ever happens again, every moment is unique, and we should recognize and be in this moment as it will never happen again. Personally, it is an expression that reminds me to slowdown and appreciate each "meeting," especially with my children. So this is why the rate of posts to presentation zen have slowed (and the rate of baby pics to facebook have increased). I have some books in the works and I'll be sharing as much content as I can here more regularly on many topics related to presentations, creativity, education, and so on. All I really wanted to say was thank you for your support and for all your emails and comments over the years. It means a lot. I'll do my best to get more useful information published on this website in a speedier fashion.