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Monday, October 8, 2012

What Matters

Its amazing how many learning opportunities exist when you're in the presence of a child. Like when you're around someone who's deaf, has a disability or a disease. There's a whole different way you have to explain things to a child. You can't speak to them in an adult level. So you have to simplify things for them. But you don't want to talk to them like they're not bright enough to understand you know. Because trust me there are so many children out there that're smarter than most adults I've met. You want the child to get what you're saying without making them feel stupid. So it's a fine, fine line! Back to my example....you have to find a way to relate these lessons to them in terms they can grasp. Same thing with diseases. They know how it feels when they get sick. But when someone is diagnosed with something more devastating....it's hard. Until it hits close to home.

I have to say if you've never looked at something through a child's eyes then you're missing out on a view of the world that's truly incredible. It's a pure, simplistic way that we've completely forgotten. They see the joy in the little moments. We get caught up with the big things, and they don't. It's beautiful. I've spoken about this before, but seeing it through a child's eyes makes it different. When an adult gets cancer children become a little sad but it doesn't quite hit home. Until someone their age is sick. When a child hears that another child has cancer it affects them on a deeper level. Now they understand that something so random can hit someone like them. No one is exempt from diseases. It just happens. So it's sad to see a child hurt in that way. Not just the healthy children, but the child who now has to look at life in a different way.

I went through a similar experience when I was in high school, seeing how death touches us all. I'd been to my grandfather's funeral when I was younger so I understood death, sort of. When I was in high school I ended up going to three funerals for people my age. One was a brother of one of my friends. The other two were close friends of mine. Hearing that someone you know has died just rocks you completely. Like your world just slipped away. I think I nearly passed out at my one friend's viewing. As hard as it is, these things do make you appreciate life in a different way. Makes you grateful you have the people in your life. Makes you glad you can laugh, cry or argue with the ones you love. Makes you really damn grateful you woke up, because so many other people didn't get that chance. I don't want to depress you with this post. I want to inspire or encourage people to enjoy the little moments. Don't worry that your TV isn't as big as your neighbors. Or that your car won't text for you while you drive. Don't sweat it if you can't afford that one big thing. Because those big things don't mean anything in the end. Be happy for what you do have, and take pride in the life you've made for yourself. I don't care if I never get to sail around the world. What I do care about is making my life, and the lives of the people I love, the best they can be. That's what matters in this world. 

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