July 6, 2012

The Sweater

When I was in high school (the year I wasn't homeschooled and went to a small, private school), I was had a close friend with/had a small crush on a boy from Chile. But life moved on and we drifted apart. As fate would have it, ten years later, I am friends with/have a small crush on a girl from Chile. Her name is Fran.


I kid, but this girl is pretty darn awesome. I love her blog, I love her blog design services (ahem, mine being one of them), and she's witty, sweet, and as I've told her before, just good people. I'm happy to have my close friend I've never met sending in a post from the west coast today.

Hi friends from Chambanachik!
I am Fran from FreeBorboleta and I was SO honored when Erika asked me to guest post for her. I've followed her blog for a long time. We might live 2,000+ but I'm lucky to call her a friend.

Currently I am a undergrad student at the University of Washington and I'm majoring in Philosophy.
The usual reaction I get to that is raised eyebrows and a snarky-not-so-clever "Oh, so you sit around and talk about the meaning of life, eh?"
At that point I chuckle a little, give an emphatic "No" and change the subject. 
I actually hardly talk about the meaning of life, unless you count talking about the arts, religions, law, international justice, science and ethics as "the meaning of life" - I suppose you could make the argument those things do make up the meaning of life but anyways...
Today I am here to talk about life.

Life sucks. Hard.
Waking up sucks.
Not getting what we want sucks.
White dog hair on black clothing sucks.
Gaining weight by merely looking at chocolate sucks.
Paying bills sucks.
Broken dreams suck.

The thought of how much life sucks can be seriously overwhelming at times.
I wish I didn't know just how overwhelming it be can yet I do.
But.
It is a huge fault in us humans to look at that and only that - the suckiness.
However, life can also be really freakin' awesome.
We will never have absolutely everything we want in life. 
Never. Ever.
We need to stop trying to get to happiness and we need to realize happiness and success are not destinations, rather they are part of the journey of life.
I could sit here and list more things that suck in life because that list is quite possibly endless but the list of life awesomeness is also endless. 
It is so easy to focus on the bad but we need to challenge ourselves to see the good - in life, the world, people.
I'm actually one of those crazy people that still believes in people's inherently good nature.
But it's not all that crazy of a belief, for example:
Yesterday I was walking to my car after class, I got really warm so I took off my sweater and looped it around my backpack's shoulder straps by my hip.
When I got to my car I realized my sweater had fallen off at some point.
I looked around the parking lot and it wasn't anywhere to be seen, which meant it had fallen off earlier in my walk and I was not about to go up the 100+ steps (no exaggeration here, I counted once) to the path that leads back into campus, so I got in my car and drove home.
Today, as I was walking to class along the little path, I saw my sweater waiting for me.
Someone picked up and hung it on the railing, hoping I would find it.
It's really nothing extraordinary, it is after all a $10 Sweater, it's not like I would've been seriously cheated had someone taken it. But no one did. And I know at least 100 people walked that path after me - students, faculty, staff, construction crew, etc... any of those people could've said "sweet, free sweater" but they didn't.

I realize I'm kind of all over the place on this post but I guess what I want to say is this:
If life is overwhelming as it can often be, take a deep breath and think of just how amazing life can be - it is often hiding in the "little things".
Never, ever give up on a good dream but even more importantly, never give up dreaming.
Realize we are all going through tough times and that the power of a simple gesture is endless.
Think about how good people really are,
think about my sweater hanging on the railing full of hope and a promise that the world and life aren't as horrible as we sometimes think they are. 

5 kind comments from you:

Holly said...

Awesome post! Love your attitude! For a long time I was really bummed out when I started thinking about how you can never really accomplish all the cool things in life one would like to. But then I just tried to focus more on living instead of thinking! You're right- happiness is NOT a destination! That is SO important that people realize that! Tambien, de Chile? Habla Espanol? Soy estadounidense de KY pero soy maestra de Espanol.
( Sorry if I jumped the gun and just looked stupid :) )

JRS said...

I agree, too many people focus on the bad things in life and don't take time to appreciate the God things. I am a laidback person and sometimes it seems to drive Erika mad that i don't stress about things as much as she does. I have an amazing wife and beautiful kids. That in itself is enough to take stress away.

Warrior Wife said...

I don't usually "do" guest posts but someone just got a new follower!

Sam said...

Such a great reminder Fran :) I always love your posts!

The New Normal said...

So true and such a good outlook on life! It is hard to look at things that way when life sucks, but I know I'd be a lot happier if I could just take time to look at the little things and realize that there is so much good in life too. Great reminder! Thanks! :)

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