One Amazing Thing

I know there has been a long gap between my last post and this one. But i really didn’t have anything to write. Today i do.

Yesterday, i finished reading the novel – One Amazing Thing by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni. I will not say that it is one of my favourite books but that does not mean it is not good. It definitely is a great read and it really made me think. I am not here to write a book review but what i am gonna write here is how that book made me feel.

It made me think of all the little things that we take for granted. We always yearn for more when what we need is right in front of us.

From the time we are able to speak and understand what is being spoken to us, we have been taught to always be thankful for what we have. We are told to respect our elders and be courteous to everyone. We are taught to be faithful and honest and not be greedy. And yet, when we grow up, our first thoughts are, ‘What do they know?‘ ; ‘They don’t know anything about me!’ ; ‘Who are they to tell me what to do!‘.

There always comes a day(believe me, it does), when everything we ever took for granted and every little thing we shunned, are the things we miss the most. Now it may feel like it’s your mother’s job to cook for you and that you have every right to complain about the taste and the texture of the morsels in your mouth. When you get older and have to cook for yourself, it feels like you’d sell anything to get the day back when your mother forcefed you with her hands. 

Now you may not give second thoughts to when you speak harshly to someone beneath your status or sometimes even elder to you. There always comes a day when these things come back to haunt you. Every little tiny detail comes back. You’ll remember the look of hurt on the person’s face, the almost shock at being given a rude reply when they were being so polite to you.

From where we stand, it may seem like there is always another time to make up for something you did wrong. It will always feel like you can fix things another day. But i say, what if the sky falls down, or there is an earthquake or a tsunami or a meteor shower? What if the last thing you spoke to your beloved was how irritating he/she was? Is that how you want your last words to be remembered?

Please take the time to smile and be polite and courteous to everyone even if it takes a little extra effort. It could be your mom or your dad or your teacher or your friend or that random shopkeeper where you buy your cigarettes. No matter who it may be, think twice before you speak. Think twice before you bring the words of your mind into existence through your mouth. They may be the only thing that people remember you by. And always remember to smile. Even if it kills you. Smile.

Just a little brighter

People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. —Bonnie Jean Wasmund

If you asked me what is the greatest thing a person can do for another person, I would reply – “share their pain”. There is no great philosophy behind this and I am not trying to be all pretentious by speaking of such deep things. In fact, this is not deep at all. It is simple and it is a matter of fact.

Empathy is something that all of us should try to cultivate and nurture within ourselves. Some of us pretend to have it but it’s all just a facade. When you see a person who has no feet, do you feel pity for that person? Or do you empathize? Yes, so many people confuse the two feelings. Empathy is when you see yourself in that person’s place and feel their pain of having no feet.

Many youngsters of today like to pretend that they care for unfortunate people and animals. They have long discussions and debates on how people should be punished for cruelty to animals and how politicians are corrupt and how they should be making better the lives of handicapped people and the other unfortunate ones. But then all they do is talk. If they really knew how it felt not to have basic necessities, they wouldn’t just be talking. They would be out there doing their part.

Have you ever given a thought to how the person serving you coffee at the coffee shop feels when he sees people of his own age hanging out with friends and spending money so freely? Ever wondered how the kid begging on the street feels when he sees you licking your candy? Ever wondered how it must feel like being a street dog going through garbage bins looking for food? And what about the janitor who cleans the washroom after you leave it dirty? Do you think he likes cleaning up after you?

If you haven’t ever given a thought to how these people feel…. Maybe it is time to start now. Scroll back up and read the quote at the start of this post by Bonnie Jean Wasmund. Now it might make more sense. Let’s try to make someone feel good today. Let’s start by trying to put ourselves in their shoes and looking at things from their points of view. We may not be able to bring about a great change in their lives, but we can try and be more sensitive. And if possible, let us try to make their day just a little better and just a little brighter.

 

One little thing that makes me happy – Post 1

One of my very good friends told me today that I think too much. She wants me to stop thinking and worrying so much about the future and start living in the present. I am gonna try from today to make a list of things that make me happy each day, even if they are just little things.


Today, I guess I could be happy about the fact that my bus reached my place earlier than usual, saving me half an hour. But is this something to be happy about? Or is it something I should be thankful for? I know i reached half hour early, but what difference did it make to me? That I got to browse an extra half hour on the internet or that I got to spend an extra half hour alone in my room? Hmm… No. I don’t think this makes me happy.
Fine, lets find something else to be happy about. The dinner was good today. I had 4 idlys and sambhar. Should i be happy for this or grateful to God? Umm… I guess that is a NO again.
Alright moving on. I got it!! I am happy that i got to see another new episode of Grey’s Anatomy Season 7 🙂 Yes! Watching Grey’s Anatomy makes me happy. And tomorrow i will get to watch an episode of House M.D 😀 Yay!
Alright, so looks like its gonna be tough finding little things to be happy about. But I am gonna try my best to think of what made me happy before i close my eyes for the day.

Lets see for how long this self-therapy works 🙂

P.S: I am basically a cynical+critical+pessimistic person. Being falsely perky doesn’t really look good on me. This post is a sincere effort on my part to try to be happy with what I have. I am gonna try my best not to worry about the future. Because truth be told, my future isn’t that bright. And if I can’t be happy now… who knows if I will ever be happy! Might as well start looking for reasons to be happy now.. than dying sad.