This morning on top of the many many things i am grateful for on a regular day i want to say special thanks for sunflowers. So many of us have a favorite flower, mine are Peonies...but there is something about those tall, bold, beautiful sunflowers that say I AM HERE AND THAT IS A REASON TO SHINE...its like they never have a bad day. Now we know that's not true...there is over-watering, drought, pests, toddlers who like to pluck them out before they get a chance to be great, squirrels who steal the seeds and replace them with peanuts(poor flower never had a shot at life) so many things that could go wrong but you can't tell because they stand so tall (dem ah bruk dem neck as the eloquent Jamaican in me would say) and grateful just to see the sun that they stretch twice as hard to meet it.
It is so important to live/exist in a state of gratitude. When we do, all the burdens and trials we face seem that much lighter. It helps us to see the good in ourselves, our situations and others...to keep our shoulder to the wheel because we consciously make an effort to count our blessings, hold ourselves accountable to even try to be worthy of all we love, those who love us...our careers, the roofs over our heads, whether it be car or home...for forgiveness and kindness, for mercy...the list is infinite.
Have you ever had a conversation with someone and left feeling so exhausted, hopeless and defeated simply because their outlook was just so negative and ungrateful? If your answer is no...hopefully its not because you are that "negative Nancy" i just described (side eye) and if you are Nancy be careful to pay attention the next time someone comes to you in a bubbly mood about a new idea or project...when they leave, do they walk away with even more enthusiasm to pursue their goal or do they appear drained and tired?
See...people like to throw around this phrase "i'm a realist" or "i just want to be practical" when in fact my friend...(you may just be a pessimistic, dream crushing, life sucking weed...but to be nice i'll say) you are a pessimist...you are that person that breaks your loved one's spirits, your words are the thing that sometimes keeps their dreams from taking flight...sometimes your confidence in them or lack thereof would have been the final step before going after that new venture or parking it forever in the box of forgotten things. In no universe is this okay...especially in the cases where, situation reversed...those friends breathe life into your dreams and pray with you about your pursuit of happiness and genuinely smile at the thought of your success(as true friends should).
We sometimes have a problem with keeping the balance between what we give and take and the quantities in which we do, and in our defense a lot of times its because we just aren't aware...whether its because we aren't prone to self evaluation or the people that love us and constantly give of themselves, don't want to risk hurting us as we do them with "our truth" by telling us just how empty they feel after interacting with us.
I say all of this to say one simple thing...it takes nothing from us to stop to say thanks, it takes nothing from us to hope along with someone we love for something they really want, it takes nothing from us to dare to believe that there is still success to be had and make a decision to live our lives with a positive outlook...but it takes everything from us and our loved ones when we live below this cloud of doubt, negativity, "No", doom and pending disappointment...everything!
Everyday we open our eyes, smell our morning breath, hear our alarm clocks, taste that blessed toothpaste that saves the world from walking about without eyebrows scorched by dragon breath...IS A BLESSING...as a matter of fact four blessings(well five, if you count toothpaste twice). Now if we can be so blessed without even getting out of bed, without even being grateful for our families, our jobs, our talents, the rain, the sunshine, proper grammar and political correctness...how many bad things can really happen in that one day to erase all the good that already happened without even a thought of lifting a finger??? Let us make more of an effort to be thankful from here on out, to be hopeful and positive...because life is going to happen, but our attitude is what differentiates between a mistake or a valuable lesson that can change our lives for the good...it is what determines whether something breaks us or strengthens us...choose to learn and be thankful for your lessons, choose to be grateful for the strength to face your trials instead of complain about their existence...be a diamond...let life polish you, be a sunflower...be great despite the challenges...be that voice of hope and pure positivity your loved ones need to make it through the day.