Posts Tagged ‘humanity’

Crooked

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Even crooked trees grow up to be as strong and mighty as the straight ones.

We’ve all felt like the crooked tree in the forest at one point or another, not quite fitting in.

I used to  wonder how will I (a self professed crooked tree) be remembered?  At some point or  another we all question how others will  remember us after we pass on. Well, I got to find out, except I’m still living. After I nearly died  and  throughout my  miraculous recovery from it, I’ve heard the memories and impressions that people had of me.  It’s been a mixture of surprise and  incredibly surreal. However, it also bears the marks of sadness because  as much as I’d like to I cannot revisit and relive the past. Therefore, I  also can’t go back and change it, but I can change the future. Although, none of us truly have control we do have the power to make choices. In fact we make thousands each day(knowingly and unknowingly) however small they may seem. This begs the question “How would you like to be remembered?” For being strong, tenacious, brilliant, ambitious, or kind? Rather than  unkind, lazy, or at a stand still in life I’m sure. I’ve been more than surprised(and blessed) to hear that the last memories of me would’ve been greatly positive. This confirms that I’ve had a great life and left the kind of mark on it I want to thus far(and I’m not finished! You too can leave the marks you desire, and there’s no time like the present in which to start. Sometimes, life can be daunting and it seems better to take the path of least resistance, but I promise there’s more rewards  to be had from the  path less traveled. You can start today planting seeds for the future(whether straight or crooked) that will grow into trees looming in a forest comprising the memories of you.  There are hardly words to describe how truly wild life can be. Since this whole event occurred to me(ie  the massive stroke)  hardly a day has gone by where I’m not in awe of the things that I’ve seen since. Just as a huge wave of love, and the best came out of New Yorkers after 9/11; I have witnessed much of the same from people after my own disaster. This has left me a better person and  with the conviction, that it shouldn’t require a disaster to bring out the best in us. We can  choose   to be our best selves everyday.

grow in excellence trees!

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Help

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“Successful people are always looking for opportunities to help others. Unsuccessful people are always asking, ‘What’s in it for me?”

-Brian Tracy.

Sometimes We can’t do everything and have to humble ourselves. After  a lifetime of being stubborn and independent, having to ask for so much help was altogether humbling and produced a great patience in me. Before I was injured I did everything when and how I wanted to. However, in the hospital and after I had to have assistance and help with nearly everything. Not only was I not used to asking for help but it was painful having to wait so long(or seemingly) for everything. I even needed help to cut my own nails! I have never been all that patient, but now I had no choice but to be patient and gracious when things weren’t done how I’d normally prefer them.  It was not only difficult having to ask and then wait, but it made me feel set back as well. We live in a “I want it now,” society. Therefore, waiting  to do anything(especially everyday tasks) was excruciating. We all need help sometimes, but never to this extent.   To ask for so much help was not only humbling but a great teacher of patience.  Imagine having to wait  to do what you want, when you never really had to. The experience of this was not only a lesson but highlighted the fact that  We are definitely spoiled by convenience. Most of all  in my times of need little human Angels popped up everywhere. This was not only a lesson in patience and humility, but community too. We all need each other more than you realize. In fact after being put into such a situation, it was clear to me that we’d all be better  off if society valued the servant roles as much as the master roles. In our pursuit for control we  miss out on the beauty of a shared human experience. How much easier  and full of love would life be, if We all helped each other rather than only ourselves? After being in a place of so much need I now understand the importance of serving and helping others. I actually look  out  for and forward to opportunities to help someone. As well as look back at the times I had them and didn’t. To share in the life and joys of another, even a stranger is more fulfilling than living selfishly. For each person that went out of their way for me, they made my day better and it was done  for no personal gain. All  of these small acts of kindness are woven into a larger tapestry that creates our experience of humanity, and  all of humanity is better when We share it.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yWP6Qki8mWc&w=420&h=315%5DIt’s a lesson I wish I would’ve learned sooner than later. For, had that happened I would have spent so much more time sharing my life with others who needed help at that moment. In doing so and giving of yourself, you gain so much more than what you give. Don’t wait too long to realize this but the sooner you begin the better!

Go, Angel Go!

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hunger strikes

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America is  full of  conveniences and fast  food  yet were starving. There are many countries that harbor starving citizens, and America is no exception. It would appear that the whole world is starving, but not only for food. There is such a lack of kindness or  acts for  the common good, that when it occurs it either seems out of place or people clamor to  witness it.  We think we want fame, food, and riches, but what we need is more love. We may be at the  top of the food chain or consider ourselves highly evolved but were actually quite simple. If you took away all the distractions and noise  of social media, advertising, and mass consumerism, We really only need basic things. Amid  all the hustle and bustle for what we think we want we’ve forgotten the most important thing, each other. In losing consideration for our fellow man we also lose ourselves. Perhaps  many won’t understand this, unless they’ve been  in need of help themselves.  When we’re selfish it doesn’t benefit us but actually harms us. In nature, it’s  been shown that when a member of the animal kingdom  is selfish, they  actually lower their ability to survive. It seems fit to argue then, that when people are selfish they don’t flourish. Indeed it’s when we help each other that  society as a whole gains. In a city  of millions, it’s not a popular web series that goes viral, but an act of kindness. Below, you too will  witness the results of a person  choosing to be selfless rather then selfish.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5xiKgeqUDDY&w=560&h=315%5D

I know many starving artists(or actors) that would kill for the  number of views this video received. Yet  they’re not the ones getting all the attention, instead a simple act of human kindness is taking the cake. Clearly, we desire more then entertainment, but to have a real human connection. Therefore, don’t be afraid to let down your walls and extend a helping hand!

reach out and let in,

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the golden touch.

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“Have a heart that never hardens, and a temper that never tires, and a touch that never hurts.

– Charles Dickens.”

How many friends do you have? I’m not speaking of Facebook, Instagram or social media, but  actual friends. We cross paths with  and touch hundreds of people every year. This didn’t become so obvious to me until I landed in the ICU of an upstate New York Hospital. An  online  fundraiser was started for me, and who were the majority of donors? Well, not many of them were  close friends, surprising?  Yes!  Instead, they were the girl I had crossed paths with once in my work and charmed, the group of  lovely friends in Brooklyn that I played beer pong with once  in their loft, a group of pretty girls I took a pin-up  class with in New York City, family members and best friends of people(ie my boyfriend at the time) that loved me. Even people I worked with or had worked with contributed. As many  of my friends  that gave, so did people  who I had crossed paths with before  the  stroke occurred. Some of these near perfect strangers even wrote in loving(some funny)things with their donations.  Not only was I peasantly surprised by the outpouring of love,but even more so the reactions I received from those I had met only once(or twice). I  couldn’t believe they remembered me, much less that I left such an impression. What if   I had been grumpy,unfriendly,or unapproachable that day instead? It was obvious that you never know who your going to meet, and  how they’ll react to(and remember) you. Little did I know at the time, that each of these beautiful souls could easily have been  some of my very close friends! This also begs the question “ How would you like to be remembered?  We all want to be remembered fondly, and I just happened to get a glimpse of my own rememberence. This clearly showed me that, you  should not take your presence for granted. Because you affect far more then you know. I left a lasting impression not because of what happened to me, but rather because of who I am as a person. These people remembered a friendly,fun,relatable girl. We  can all leave such impressions. How? By waking up each day, embracing it, being grateful for our lives, and holding onto our childlike wonder. Moreover  by letting go of our fears or worries  and taking life head on, because after all We only have one!

 go out and cause a positive effect,

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Love lockets on a fence..

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     “Our prime purpose in this life is to help others. And if you can’t help them, at least don’t hurt them.”

― Dalai Lama XIV

If  I have learned anything on this healing journey it’s that like a fence were all linked together. The   influence of a few can be felt by many. Imagine a world where helping one another was commonplace. Perhaps that’s my 1950’s pipe dream. However, I’ve  seen the difference it’s made in my life so I can only conclude that it would revolutionize the world. If We could just envision our connections more clearly, perhaps We would see how paying it forward only benefits us. Even the notion of holding the door  open for someone else, it all adds up. I remember loving every act of kindness I witnessed in otherwise pretty selfish environments. From a young gentleman giving up his seat on the subway,  to the girl helping a woman  haul Her baby carriage down the treacherous stairs.  Each of these  acts may seem insignificant, but imagine if they ran rampant. The way a society treats the least of it’s members(i.e. the elderly,children,animals,the handicapped) reflects it as a whole. I’ve even witnessed a pair of homeless men helping out another with no legs on the New york subway at 3 a.m!   Those who haven’t struggled themselves fail to see others who are currently in  a struggle. Personally I’ve been rich, I’ve been poor,and I never saw as much as when I was poor. For what seems much longer, but  for about two years I have been living as a handicapped individual. In this position it’s easy to be overlooked and feel frustratingly  helpless. I’ve  noticed much more the people that open the door, go out of their way to help, and even kind words. On the other hand it’s been even easier to see acts of selfishness. There are even forays into the science of being selfless.(see here! Those who possess more selfish qualities fare worse in terms of survival in the wild. What does that tell you? Could not the same be said about humans? After all no man is an Island.  Just as lovers that symbolically  padlock themselves together on a fence in Paris, throwing the key into the river, so are We connected. My guess is there’s no finding  that key anytime soon so We should at least make the best of it until the fence rusts away or the padlock   gets cut off!

Cheers  and kitten ears,

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Standing on a soapbox.

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                                   “Dying is easy,it’s living thats hard.” -unknown

I find this statement to be quite true at times.

Not just for me but for everyone on this earth.

Anyone can get on a soapbox with a bullhorn.

Except few people can command attention with it,despite their cries of indignation.

Through circumstance I have been given that authority,

likewise ,“With great power comes great responsibility,” as said by Stan Lee.

Through unexpected,and unplanned circumstances I’ve found myself primed for a soapbox.However small the audience,each person matters.The question begging an answer is,now that I’m here, what do I have to say?

While driving along to a concert with my family a thought occurred to me;Attempting to describe any singular great experience is akin to trying to fit music and the entirety of feelings it encompasses into a box.

Besides such an act seeming impossible, at times so has my recovery.

However, I have some good news it’s not impossible.My hopes besides a full recovery are to demonstrate what’s been given to me to others similarly in need of their own recipe to bring them through their troubles.No one person can fulfill this because its something we have to find on our own however other people, like the Cheshire Cat(Alice in Wonderland),can certainly help point the way.

Which direction will you choose? Well, that depends on which cat you encounter.

The best kind are positive,follow through with what they say,and are able to properly demonstrate love.

It is in love that I recommend blocking out the negative things of this world,

especially when faced with an important mission.

It is not enough to simply be alive, but to also actively live your life and share that lust for life with others.Because were all in this boat together.

Overall it has been these types of people that have built a human chain of sorts that has brought me through.

Humanity is like a chain link fence,were all together as one, if any link be weak,strengthen it.

How do you help the weak link? Just as you would a metal fence,build it back up.

Be it with words,inspiration,a hug,some physical help,or whatever the method it’s important to do it.

***When I was living in New York City I saw that negativity could spread throughout people almost like a cancer and physically exhaust you.

Now that I have been able to look back into it like a snow globe after returning from the brink of death,my hope is to be an inspiration,not only thru actions but in,interactions as well.

Each one of us is a walking,living story, in order to let other people read your book, you have to show them.

Nonetheless I am determined that where I’m headed is nowhere near where I came from.

 

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