There’s a guy in my apartment building that tries to flirt with me every time I see him.

This is unfortunate, mainly because I am not least bit interested in him. He talks too much, cracks unfunny jokes and his energy is too intensely focused on me.

I hadn’t seen him in several months, but when I got on the elevator this evening, I heaved a heavy internal groan. He was looking down at his phone, so I thought he didn’t see me and that I would make a quick getaway when we got to the lobby.

“OMG, I can’t believe it’s going to snow tomorrow!” Another sigh on the inside as the bad joke signaled that he definitely saw me.

As we walked out the building, his stride was a little too close to mine. The doorman looked at me quizzically, as if to ask if we were together. I wanted to mind meld with him so he’d know the truth.

I let out a heavy, and audible, sigh of relief when he walked in the opposite direction.

I’d come downstairs to make my way to my neighborhood park.  I’d just finished doing the laundry and had done a bit of tidying up in my closet, so I wanted a respite from my chores.

As I sat on the bench, I took in the late summer evening and its uncharacteristically cool breezes. I felt the wonder of nature.

The interconnectedness of everything became apparent to me: the symphony of insects in the ivy behind me, the sway of the trees surrounding the park, the intimate conversations of neighbors all around the perimeter of the park. Everything felt woven together as part of some big cosmic tapestry, myself included.  I felt transported by the serenity and mesmerized by the sense of connection everywhere.

I was humbled and grateful.

The spell was broken by thoughts of the guy on the elevator.  Why did it always seem that men I wasn’t interested in were interested in me?

I wish I could say that the answer came to me in that moment and now I’ve found the secret to finding true love.  It didn’t and I haven’t.  But, if I could feel grace of the world just sitting in the park, then couldn’t I find the space in me to appreciate that someone finds me attractive?

After all, aren’t we all connected?  Aren’t we all bound by love?  Couldn’t I turn my annoyance into compassion?

I may need some time before testing those theories on my overzealous neighbor. For the moment, the grace will have to be in the quest to find the answers.