Sitting at UCSF, 400 Parnassus, 2nd floor, in the Pediatric Specialties Clinic. There are children running around in the waiting room. There are people eating Panda Express next to me, a few seats away. It makes me feel a little hungry since I’ve only had my Grande Triple Toffee Nut Nonfat Latte this morning and it’s almost 11:0am. There is a movie on the television for the children to watch but I think the adults are more into it. There are giggles coming from the far left corner from a child playing with what I imagine would be his older brother, could be a young father. Which ever it is, their bond is amazing. You should see the smiles on their faces. It radiates love and joy and warms my heart. I find myself smiling at them while the little boy hangs upside down from the older boys shoulders. How a simple act can make someone so ecstatic. There is a bustle behind the reception desk as employees talk and patients check-in and out. There is so much going on in front of me but then it all seems to disappear as I see this view behind me.
The sun is shining and there are blue skies. But don’t let it fool you, it’s 48 degrees. While it’s one of the coldest winters San Francisco has had or I have experienced, it is refreshing. Invigorating. Inviting. Inspiring. Cleansing. It drowns out all the noise behind me and takes me into a quiet, peaceful, zen place. I forget just for a brief moment, I am surrounded by suffering children and worried parents. I yearn for the moment I can take a step out of this building and take a deep breath of crisp winter air. When you own your breath, nobody can steal your peace.