Don’t get taken away by the title thinking I am some spoilt brat who is telling people to just shut up and be grateful for what you have and quit whining about your problems. I know whining is not the best choice of word here, but as it is letting me get my point across, I will let it be.
This is one blog entry that I am mainly posting for myself, rather than my readers. Sorry readers, next post will be for you guys. Life is very difficult and I may be only 24 years old, yet I have seen quite a bit of stuff first hand. And I know that no matter how much we want to say those clichéd overused dialogues like, “Always look at the glass half full” or “Always look at the bright side” or “Every single cloud has a silver lining and a person should look for that”, it is not always possible. It is good in theory and always worth a try, unfortunately it is not always possible, even for the world’s most optimistic and bravest person.
Yet I thought to myself that I should compile a list of the ten things that I am grateful to have, because sometimes it is the little things in life that count and it is in the smallest things where happiness can be found. To quote Harry Potter character Albus Dumbledore, “Happiness can be found in the darkest of times, only if one remembers to turn on the light”.
And on top of this, there will always be nay sayers, namely, society. Society and the world will always tell you how nothing you ever have or do is ever good enough. A person with a bicycle is told to get a motorcycle, a person with a basic car is told to get a luxury car. Similarly, the darker toned person is told to get treatments to make themselves fair, the person with curly hair is told to “manage it” (make it straight). Society’s unwritten job is to make us feel bad about what we don’t have, instead of letting us sit back and enjoy and appreciate what we do have. We need to learn to appreciate what we have, essential for our own mental state and mental well being.
So here begins my list:
1. I am grateful to have a roof over my head. Right next to my house there is an empty plot where the owners have given to some family to temporarily live in. Those people live partially in a tent because the building they are given is not big enough to house everyone, they are apparently a large family in total because a lot of extended relatives are living together. Seeing them gave me the appreciation of having a roof.
2. Having an international set of friends. God has blessed me with an international set of friends, thanks to the internet. People say that you need offline friends, but I say why harp over what I don’t have. I sit back and enjoy my online friends and appreciate the diversity that I have been lucky enough to enjoy thanks to my international friends list.
3. Being pain free. I spent a long time struggling with back pain which was the result of a combination of a sprain and an old injury causing problems. Finally, now, I am getting it treated and as the treatment is towards the end now, I am almost pain free. Seeing how pain had affected many aspects of my life for a long time, I am grateful to be out of pain now and do basic activities which pain was preventing me from doing.
4. Freedom. There are many people who are in captivity. People locked up behind bars and other forms of captivity exist that hinder freedom in the sense I am talking about.
5. Being able to read and write. There are many who are denied the right to education for various reasons, may it be finances, or societal attitude or simple non-availability of a school. Even I had to struggle for my education due to simple lack of opportunity. Being able to read and write is something we take for granted, when it is actually a big gift and blessing.
6. Faith. When it comes to religion and faith, I will say that I consider myself to belong to a particular religious denomination and I strongly believe it. Fortunately, or unfortunately, I do not know, however, I do not have blind faith in that particular religion because there are certain aspects of it that I do question. Yet, religion and faith has been a big pillar of support for me during my most difficult times, hence I remain grateful to have it.
7. The ability to get out of bed in the morning. Whenever the morning sun hits our eyes and the alarm clock rings, we get irritated like anything wishing we never had to leave the bed. This, at least, used to be my attitude, until I got sick once. And due to that illness, I had no energy or strength to get out of bed. No matter how much I struggled, there was no strength to get up. This taught me a good lesson in appreciating basic mobility.
8. Life. To be alive. This may appear like a no brainer, but to me it is not. I once got sick and almost died of the illness. I must’ve been, I guess, around 16 years old at the time. Being so close to death is not a pleasant place to be at all and it taught me to appreciate being alive.
9. Internet. When something happens to my internet connection or I lose internet access for a bit, I fear I am going to lose my sanity, for real. So thank you for my internet connection. I may curse you when you go in a bad mood, but I am really grateful to have you.
10. Books. Books are my lifeblood, my lifeline, my obsession, my everything. I am like so obsessed with the written word to the extent that I simply cannot imagine my life without my books. Books have played a very essential and important role in my life. It is because I read, that I never felt alone. Nothing can beat the feeling of holding a book in the hand and just reading the book away. Books are epic, hands down.
And here I conclude my list. My apologies if this post made my sound like a self centered brat or a show off or a self obsessed person as everything I wrote kind of does revolve around myself. But again, just like I wrote in the beginning, this post was mainly meant for me, not my readers. Sorry for that, Dear Reader.