Coming back home for Winter Break, I wanted to catch up with everyone: friends coming back home from college, a marine friend whose time was limited at home, mentors, coworkers, and cousins.

 I also had my family.

 I tried to budget time between everyone within the two weeks I had, being a social butterfly, more than usual. Every time I went out, my dad would ask me to stay home despite the fact that we were doing nothing. However, I’d rather spend time with people to catch up than to do nothing at home. So I often left home.

Then, I started to realize something slowly. Doing things together may had been a bonus, staying home would had been nice, but those were not what my Dad was asking for. What he truly wanted was for us to simply be: to do our own things while being under the same roof, regardless of what roof it was; to uplift each other by exploring our own interests, in the same space. This space is about the importance of presence. The power of presence.

 This was the space that my Dad was asking for, but I often left home.

Coming back home, it is easy to feel to use my time with people outside of my family, but my Dad constantly reminds me of the simple things in life: just being together. Together.