Sometimes it seems like we have little to be thankful for or that we have not achieved much in the past little while. Looking back from a Friday at the week that was there are almost innumerable ways we have positively impacted our own lives and the lives of others.
Yesterday I had not made any plans for the evening and looked forward to making myself a hot drink, eating some chocolate pudding, and writing some music. Maybe with the possibility of some company at some point. Almost as soon as I had sorted out those non-plans a friend asked if I wanted to go and see the recently released Joker film, and one of my flatmates asked if I wanted to watch the rugby world cup game later that night. I agreed to both of these unexpected invitations to spend quality time with good people. Small amounts of time meaningfully spent.
The flipside was I neglected to eat a proper dinner. This is something I am realising affects my mental and emotional health more than my physical health, and more than I think it will. I could have focussed on the negative, that I had not eaten a proper complete meal. Instead, over the past couple of years I’ve been trying to look deeper, look to learn, and make change when change is needed. I need to eat complete meals regularly, and for the most part I am managing to do so. Not something I could have said even up to a few years ago. A little thing, but of paramount importance to well-being, and absolutely necessary to acknowledge this positive change within myself.
After watching the film last night I found myself feeling fragile. A feeling of loneliness, which has not been present for several months, started to well up again. The feeling was not as strong as in the past, but I did find my mind drifting to questions I often ask myself:
Am I the kind of person someone would want to spend their life with? Are me and my depression too much hard work? Will she and I be able to find each other? Have we already met and neither of us know it? Why do I not yet have a place I feel comfortable calling home? Why am I not yet married?
In truth, these are not questions I have the answer for as I do not know the future. What I can do is pray, dive into scripture, and be thankful for the wonderful caring and loving people God has surrounded me with. I went to a friend’s wedding over the weekend and it was a joyous occasion. In the past being present at weddings has turned my thoughts inward to ask:
“Why am I alone?”
That question has an answer. I am travelling my journey but I am not alone. God is with me, my family and friends are with me, and there are many who travel their roads feeling similar thoughts of loneliness. Little things, hard to remember at times, but so very important.
If you find yourself reminiscing over the week that was, fumbling through unfamiliar thoughts and emotions, or experiencing familiar ones that cause you to turn inward unhelpfully, know you are not the only one. We all have our own world view which means we see things from our own, completely valid, perspective. This can make it difficult to believe it, but the truth remains: we are not alone. I was reminded of this when I stepped on the bus home from the film. The bus driver showed care for each one of the passengers that boarded the bus. He engaged in a brief conversation with each of us, and gave each of us a genuine farewell. I don’t know how many of the other passengers noticed, but it made a difference to me. So, to you bus driver, I’m sorry I did not ask your name, thank you from the depths of my heart and soul.
The smallest moment can ripple out into something larger than we could ever have imagined. Let’s share these with each other. Let’s create a world where acknowledging the good in ourselves is easier than the world pointing out our flaws. We are all doing our best but that doesn’t mean we can’t be better. So, when we see the opportunity to be better, let’s help each other do it.
Be good, keep good, and sleep good, dear readers. Peace.
Photo by Daniel Kux from Pexels