Think about something you are grateful for. If the kids are screaming and they don’t want to put their jackets on, maybe take a deep breath and pause, feel grateful that you have kids who have jackets and that you have enough money to get on the train and even the fact that there is a train. If you’re upset that your colleague is getting a raise and promotion, can you take a moment to be really, really grateful that you still have a job?
I was recently watching the Oprah Lifeclass, where a mother talked about the call she got 11 years ago, when she learned her three daughters were in a terrible car accident. One daughter was told she’d never walk again. The other two daughters were in critical condition. They all survived to tell the story. The daughter who was told she couldn’t walk now walks and is pregnant. When Oprah asked the daughters what they learned from this tragedy, they all replied, “Never take anything for granted.”
Life can change in an instant. I have never forgotten a quote I read in a Time magazine interview with Christopher Reeve, where he spoke about watching people do everyday things, like unbutton a jacket, pick up a fork, tie their shoes or walk up steps. He said, “If they only knew how lucky they are.”
He said this as he lay there with doctors and nurses trying to help him move his limbs, hooked up to all kinds of medical machines, including a ventilator. I wonder, why is it that we have to wait for something so tragic to happen to be grateful for the miracle of our lives?