Mindfully Saying Thanks (sometimes you just have to)

The inclination to write this post crept up on me as I was doing my daily two-second (hah!) FB check this morning.

Something I saw there stood out so starkly…it appeared to be showing me the yin and yang of life itself.  

As many FB users do, I subscribe to a few people and communities that interest me. Today, my FB wall had a juxtaposition of two themes that were such contrasts that it made me stop in my tracks and think.

Here is what I’m talking about. [It’s a screen snip so the links won’t work on the picture].  

I don’t mean to wax philosophical so…but do you see what I see?

On the one hand, you have Mariam Tia.  Courageous, tragic, bold, inspiring and as Mr.Kristof says “World leaders could use some of her backbone“.  Do read her story and that of so many other Sudanese people caught in a merciless situation that they have to call “life”.

On the other hand, adjacent to her story, we have ….fashion designer Satya Paul – showcasing his beautiful, expensive creations that women love to drool over. [Satya Paul is the name of an eponymous Indian design house which creates and sells some fabulous high-end clothing, mostly for women].

It’s just that (through no fault of theirs!), sitting right next to Mariam’s story, posts on Satya Paul (and I?) seem so flighty, superficial, soft and silly. And yet, these thoughts would never have crossed my mind if I had not just spied those divergent images together, one right after another.

Both topics are of interest to me. Besides, Satya Paul is a substantial presence in the design world. How come then that just because I happened to see these images adjacent to each other, I feel so….well, icky? It’s also what got me thinking like this.

[Needless to say, if nothing else, I would like you to read Mariam’s story. Mariam, who named her baby daughter “Fakao” which means “bombs are dropping…which was what was happening all around her when she was pregnant].

As I read her story, I thought to myself, Mariam and I live such different lives – yet here I am getting inconvenienced and unhappy with the most trivial of matters, despite basically living a good life where I have the time and means to lust after Satya Paul’s designs, using catch phrases like life is beautiful so lightly, as banalities almost – without even thinking before spouting them.  

How often do you and I truly acknowledge and value what we are so fortunate to have?

As I finished reading about Mariam, I simply came to a complete stop. Then, what I did very deliberately and mindfully was this:  

I. Appreciated. My. Life.

And not just the happy stuff either but all of it – all that is inseparable, unchangeable and woven together.

I paid homage. To my friends and family, to my relationships and connections, to those who passed through my life and to those who entered and stayed. To my joys and sorrows, my successes and failures, my pleasures and regrets, my hopes and fears. In other words, to the yin and yang of a life that I am so fortunate to have.

And as I did this, I realized something else. Racing through life, giving more attention than they deserve to irritations, regrets, fears or troubles, I simply don’t give my holistic existence a solid pat on its back often enough.  (How about you?) 

Not to get too preachy, but whoever you are, as you are reading this, can I ask you to do something (and do it more than just once, please…maybe even once a day)?

Don’t just say it, but BELIEVE this: that your life is very beautiful indeed.




Posted on June 11, 2012, in people, tragedy and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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