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Be Grateful for Everything You Have

I grew up in the Philippines. Compared to the United States, it’s a very poor country. For a good majority of the time growing up, my Dad refused to have us live in the “American” section. Instead, we lived in a much more “modest” area.

It wasn’t the slums, but it wasn’t fancy. Right over the wall from one of my places was a community of squatters. They didn’t own the land, but they put up simple structures and lived there rent free.

There are always people that have it WORSE than you do. I don’t care who you are. Even if you’re Stephen Hawking! Compared to people who are DEAD, he’s not doing that bad. Sure, he has a tough life, but he seems to be making the best of it.

My “THEME SONG” for life (everyone should have one) is by a 60’s group called RARE EARTH. One of their bigger hits was a song called: “I Just Want to Celebrate”. The first line goes: “I just want to celebrate another day of living”.

Every day when I wake up I think about how lucky I am to be “visiting” the planet. No one guaranteed me I’d have this many years on earth. If things aren’t going so well, I always think to myself: Would I rather be here with these problems or be dead? I’ve never wanted to be dead MORE. It just didn’t seem nearly as fun.

Chances are you’ll have some really CRAPPY days (or weeks or months) while you’re alive. Welcome to the human race. No one seems to have everything work perfectly in their life every single day. Even celebrities have tough times. It’s part of being human.

But, no matter how bad it’s ever gotten for me I’ve always preferred to be alive rather than dead. Not everyone feels that way. I had a good friend who tried to commit suicide more than once. This person had, at that time, concluded it was better to be dead than alive. Luckily this individual is still around and NOW enjoying life.

This illustrates an important point. When you wake up and don’t feel like living, it usually isn’t a permanent condition. Things change. Things get better. And the reverse is true. Just when you feel like you’re on top of the world, something will happen to make you think that death wouldn’t be a bad alternative.

I’m grateful for everything I have. I often tell my wife that if I lost every material thing I had, it would kind of suck, BUT, it still wouldn’t be THAT bad. I would still be alive. In fact, I think that in some ways, if it ever happened to me AGAIN, I would just look at it like a board game. You just have to start a new game.

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