February 28, 2013
Two years ago this month, my husband and I married, and then celebrated our honeymoon on a Caribbean Cruise. When we embarked, we immediately met and adored, Neville, our Maitre’ d, whose guidance we enlisted to find dining companions for our 8:00 dining time. On the 2nd day of the cruise, Neville said: “I think I have found someone for you; they too, have approached me with the same request.” And that is how we met Cassie and Greg, aboard the 3000+ passenger cruise.
At our first dinner that Monday night, we were so engaged that we hadn’t realized that the entire restaurant had cleared out – that the tables were being set up for the morning breakfast. We learned that Cassie and Greg live in Connecticut and also had a vacation home in Sarasota where we live. Yet most importantly, we discovered that we were both “Soulmate couples.”
Many people will say that it is rare to find two couples where all four parties get along seamlessly, yet that’s how it was, and still is, with Cassie and Greg. Last night – on their first night in Florida after leaving cold gray Connecticut weather, we all met for dinner and felt like we had just seen one another hours before. Giddiness and mild squealing erupted as we greeted, and the very first thing Cassie and Greg asked was: “We want to hear all about what you are doing; what you have been up to!” And then they leaned forward, arms folded over elbows, and earnestly listened as if we were sharing a secret code we had just broken.
Who does this?
Who listens to you as if you are the most important being on the planet? Who ever-so-gently interrupts to ask: ‘Wait…this is so cool; I want to hear more details!” And it got me to thinking – that perhaps, not many people do this.
Cassie and Greg have a special and unique gift; it is a gift of empathic graciousness. When Greg asked a question about our kids during their visit for my July birthday – post cruise - two years ago, Cassie would answer: “Remember Honey; we didn’t meet their son because he was working at the Firework’s store.” Cassie remembers details of our five children, even though they have only met one of our children.
Humbled and honored all at once, my husband and I couldn’t stop talking after dinner last night. And once again, having closed the restaurant – we discovered that not only did we have a Soulmate-to-Soulmate connection with Cassie and Greg, we felt like they were lifelong friends whom we have known all of our lives. Their grace, their ease, and their love for one another after 23 years of marriage, just seeped out of them, and well…it just feels so good to be with them. They are ‘feel good’ people themselves who make others instantly feel good. You cannot feel badly when you are with them; it is nearly impossible.
So what is the magic ingredient they have, I asked? Greg and Cassie leaned inwards to each other and mused. After a few moments of reflection, Greg said: “I think we always give care to each other every day, no matter what.” Cassie said, “We have hills and valleys, but mostly we enjoy and remember the hills.” Greg nodded and said: I think you need both. In fact, we share openly with our children who will see disagreements and witness us openly problem solve.” Cassie nodded and said: “And we always seek resolution, and we believe that is a good model for our children.”
We left them with such joy and peace in our hearts and appreciated how fortunate we were to have them shower their loving energy all around us. Our smiles were endless, the collective joy unmistakable.
We received a great gift last night: a reminder that effusing grace and attentiveness in that present moment, is the most beautiful present we can give one another. Whether is with your Soulmate, child, parent, sibling, friend, co-worker, or boss, the gift of honoring someone with your genuine attention is invaluable. Thanks, Cassie and Greg, for being the poster kids for gracious caring.