Wednesday, June 4, 2014

10 Lessons I learnt from a STRANGER

One lazy Sunday morning, I was laying idle with nothing to do, I had just completed a book and had no new one to read. The rain had just stopped after continuously pouring the whole night, the sun had risen. I opened the curtain and looked out of the window, I could see little children crying, their elder brothers/sister playing, their mothers doing laundry, their fathers playing archery, some other ladies dancing and cheering them up. As I still laid down watching them, all with beautiful smiles, I wondered what these people were thinking, what they were going through, their dreams, their hopes, their life purposes and expectations.
The night before I had just thought about my own, had got a little frustrated, a little worried, a little excited, feeling luckier compared to the disadvantaged people at the same time unluckier compared to the advantaged ones.
I woke up, went to the wash room, made myself a cup of tea and turned on the Television to check if there was anything interesting. A show caught my attention. It was a talent show. People were show casing their talent, each one better than the other and then I watched this amazing lady dance for 10 minutes with one leg.
As I watched her, I noticed how graceful she was, so beautiful with such pretty eyes and her dance was just amazing, I didn’t even close my eyes for a second. I was once again left stunned by God’s amazing creation, the extra ordinary talent the lady was being blessed with, when god doesn’t give a person something, he substitutes it with something else, something more wonderful. After the dance, as she received people’s standing ovation and applause, she was being asked by the ‘still startled’ judges if she was born like that. With a wide smile, which made her look even more beautiful, she answered she lost her leg in an accident in 2009 when she was returning from a dance class.
I had thought the lady was just born like that and god had given her a special inborn talent. But it wasn’t true. She was born like I was. She was just 23 when she lost her leg. Life was just so cruel to her. She said she loved dancing more than anything else. A dancer losing a leg is unthinkable, it’s just absurd. I felt so bad that I started crying, I thought it was very unfair for her. Suddenly, the issues that I was facing didn’t seem cruel at all.
However, the optimism the lady had in her eyes, in her speech, the determination she had was just unbelievable. She had not only learnt how to dance with one leg, but she had also learnt how to live happily irrespective of the circumstances she had been put in by life. Most importantly, she has not given up her dream to become a dancer; she had not given up dancing just because she lost her one leg. After she finished talking, there was a smile in my face, I just felt so grateful I watched the show, even more grateful I knew a lady like her existed.
 Here are ten lessons that all of us can learn from her:
1. You are not alone in your problems

Photo Credit ~ Google
Sometimes, when we are having our hard times in life, we feel like we are the only ones having such problems and difficulties, while everyone out there is having a great life. This is not true at all. Everyone faces problems/troubles in life and there are chances that some are even worse than what you are facing. Don’t feel that you are alone because you are not.
In 2009, I remember crying over a breakup, feeling like that could be the worst thing that can happen to anyone. And the irony is, in some corner of the world, a dancer had lost her leg.

2. You must have your own goals and dreams:
Never stop dreaming no matter what. The lady had a dream, she wanted to become a dancer and even in the midst of all the difficult situations, she pushed on, kept trying and got to where she is today, a dancer who dances so elegantly with one leg. She earns a living by dancing.
3. Let go of the things that can’t be changed
Sometimes there are things in life that can’t be changed no matter what you do. For example in the lady’s case, she couldn't change her being handicapped, but she didn’t choose to remain useless instead focused on her dreams and became a dancer as she always wanted to. So, it’s important to focus on the things that can be changed, let go of the things that can’t. The more you hang on to things which can’t be changed, the unhappier you will be. 
4. Bad things can also happen to good people:
Photo Credit ~ Google
Bad things can happen to good, innocent people most of the time. You don’t have to do any wrong for wrong things to happen to you.
5. A healthy self-image and self respect is very important:
If you love yourself unconditionally, if you respect yourself and know what kind of person you really are deep inside, no situation/circumstances in life can change or demolish you. The lady lost one of her legs, she had a choice, she could have remained behind closed doors or could have remained idle, she had a supportive family, yet she didn't. She started to learn dancing with one leg again. She knew she is much better than that. She loved herself and this helped her stand proudly in front of the world.
6. Never criticize people for their physical appearances:
Photo Credit ~ Google
Some people just have a habit of casually criticizing people about their appearances not realizing how they would feel. It’s not the appearances of people that define them, it’s their inner self which does. People try to act tough and unaffected when they are being criticized about the way they look, but in reality, this sort of criticism always matter and it always hurts. 
7. Let no one define you:

You are worth more than what people say or think of you. You will meet different people in life, some people who will bring out the best in you and others who will always discourage and demotivate you. Don’t let anyone define you, your life or your future.   

As she told her story with a beautiful smiling face, she said it was not easy for her. Though her family supported her every time, there were people who told her that she will never accomplish anything great in life and she should just stay the same as anybody else. And now she earns a living by dancing and she is no ordinary. 

8. Life’s struggles are necessary for growth:

Life’s struggles are important for an individual’s growth. Without them, we cannot grow into the person that we are meant to be, we cannot be the best versions of us. Struggles not only make us stronger, better and kinder people, they also let us learn more about ourselves and our life purposes.

9. Family is your most reliable source of support in any situation:
Family is the most important people in your life and the most reliable source of support no matter what happens to you. The love from your family is unconditional. So keep them close to your heart, love them unconditionally because at the end of the day, its only them.
10. Be grateful always and choose to be happy:
Regardless of your circumstances, always be grateful. Be thankful, because no matter how bad things are now, they could always be worse. The fact that you are alive, with a roof over your head and 3 meals a day to eat means that you are much better off than a significant portion of the world’s population. Sometimes, it’s hard for us to realize that because we are surrounded by richer, better and happier people. This isn’t true. So, be grateful for the problems that you get to face in life, they remind you of how good your life really is.
And choose to be happy because happiness is always a choice.
Photo Credit ~ Google