Learning the art and discipline of presence has been essential to living joyfully and engaging myself in a focused healing of the mind, body, and spirt as 2022 draws to a close. Enter matcha: the bitter, gloriously green fantastically frothy tea from China and Japan.
This all started of late when a friend gave me Jade Leaf matcha as part of a starting treatment care package in November. During my first chemotherapy session, my husband poured the delicate powder into by to-go mug and swirled in hot water.
I was transported back to Japan and the indelible smell of temple hinoki incense burning, the body and mind slowing to take in the cadence of peaceful meditation.
I felt a gateway open up, and like all things in my life, I surged forward with purpose to assemble my team of tools and products to be able to bring matcha’s presence more fully into my daily routine. I went straight to Jade Leaf and ordered an matcha starter set with ceremonial grade matcha, electronic matcha wisk, scoop–the works!
While I was awaiting my equipment to arrive in the mail, I had the good fortune to cross paths with a Brooklyn artist, Tyshawn Henry, whose pop-up stand next to the 97th Street Green Market drew me in like a riptide. We chatted a bit and then a bit more.
I walked away with stories of the work that inspired my first two matcha presence cups made by the hands of Tyshawn in her Brooklyn-based Red Bridge Studio and a new friend whose business pursuits put her in my Harlem/UWS orbit on the regular.
The beauty of the matcha in my story is that it has become my ritual of presence. I engage with the making and sipping of matcha in the mornings while I meditate, in the afternoons when it’s time to slow down and breath, even in the bath at the end of the day, holding the warm cup in my hands, feeling the earthenware grounding and holding me present.