Did you wake up in a bed this morning, comfortable and warm? Do you get to say I love you to someone and hear it back when you hang up the phone or leave the house? Are you giving or getting encouragement from a coworker or boss?
We take many of life’s routines for granted, not giving a second thought to those questions. It’s until something drastic happens, a breakup or losing a job, that we cling to the thoughts of when we had it well.
The story below is a reminder to always be grateful for what we have in life.
I was walking on Saturday and a young man approached me asking for money. He looked scared so I struck up a conversation because although he is struggling, he’s a human being and I wanted to know what was wrong.
He said that he was laid off from an auto body shop earlier this month and it’s been tough finding work because fixing cars is the only thing he is good at and no one is hiring.
Feeling ashamed, he walks around asking for money because he has no other choice, he will be homeless by the end of October.
I felt his pain and encouraged him not to let go of his gift. When you’re down and out, you don’t have much of an imagination because you’re upset over the past and you’re worried about your future. The present is an afterthought because of the painful pull of those two sides.
The world may have given up on you, but doesn’t mean you have to follow. We talked about ideas to get him back on his feet. Staying away from getting drunk or high, calling friends to see if he can couch surf for a couple weeks, but bringing something to the table; paying them, cleaning, or making dinner. Listing his services on Craig’s List and becoming a mobile auto body, which if he does a great job at a competitive price, will help him find success.
After our discussion, he thanked me and we hugged. I offered him a couple dollars, but he declined and began to cry, saying money wasn’t what he needed, but to feel like a person again; that someone would look at him as an equal and would believe in and talk to him as such.
We have gifts that we can share with the world. We have our moments when we experience adversity, some worse than others, but it doesn’t mean that we are worthless.
Being depressed and alone when facing a hardship is an experience I've been through. The only thing that made me feel better was having someone I could talk to, someone that believed in me, because I didn't even believe in myself.
I started practicing being grateful for everything in my life; remembering the warmth of hugs from loved ones, the laughter between friends, being able to pay bills, appreciating that I'm blessed and very much worth it to have such wonderful things.
That young man is very much worth it and gained his first client that night.