Tuesday, 1 December 2009

A moment to think...

Has something ever happened in your life which made you stop and think? Made you promise to yourself that you would never again take anything for granted?

It happened to me back in 2005. My heart got broken you see and the only way I could help it to heal was to take some time out and get to know me again. I needed a challenge, I needed to regain my self confidence and I needed to believe in happiness again. So I took a sabbatical from work and took myself off around the world. The first stop was Nepal and to be honest, from there I didn't need to travel anymore, I found everything I was looking for in an orphanage full of the most amazing children I have ever met.

The children had nothing to call their own other than the clothes on their backs but they still greeted me every morning with a huge smile ready to face the day. They had no toys, no games, no books, none of life's little luxuries. I remember that they were all fascinated by my CD Walkman, squabbling over who would listen to it first. They'd never seen anything like it before. To me it was just something to ease the boredom during long journeys.

Perhaps the most humbling moment for me though was when Gita a beautiful little girl found a small packet of biscuits on the way home from school. Most children I know would have wolfed them down, perhaps not giving a second thought to sharing them. Not Gita. There were 15 children in that orphanage and I watched in amazement as she divided the biscuits equally between all of them giving herself just crumbs and making sure the younger children got enough. My heart went out to each and every one of them that day, and although in theory I was there to teach them, I don't think they realised how much they taught me.

When I left I cried but I made a promise to myself that I would never ever take anything for granted again. It surprises me now when I look back how quickly something which had been so life changing began to slip to the back of my mind. The promises I had made were quickly forgotten as I settled back into the daily grind. Just now I was on the Internet, looking for even more presents to buy for Little Legs. Then I took a moment to think. I shut down the shopping pages and began writing this post. This post is part of that moment and I'll read it every time I need reminding of what life is really about.

11 comments:

  1. A timely reminder of what really matters as we all start rushing headlong into the annual consumer binge that Christmas seems to have become. Thank you!

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  2. Lovely post. I've written before about how my children have far too many toys for them to play with. It doesn't seem right. I think a lot of people could do with having the experience you did.

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  3. Thank you both for reading and taking the time to comment. I'm so grateful for the experience I had. I can't wait until Little Legs is older and I can sit down with her and tell her all about those special children.

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  4. so true, we so easily forget those things that we swear we never will. And a good reminder. thank you.

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  5. How heartbreaking the lives some children have. Thankfully ours have no concept of how lucky they are x

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  6. Beautiful post. We do all need to stop sometimes and realise just how lucky we are, and really when it comes down to it we don't need all the materialistic things, just love and friendship.

    xx

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  7. Heather, Mummmmeee and VBH - Thank you for the comments. You're right. Life is so busy that I think sometimes we forget to just stop and count our blessings x

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  8. What a lovely post! Seems silly the little things we worry about when there are children out there who don't have very much!

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  9. Thats such a well timed post. I keep worrying that this year without my salary we can't afford to give the kids as much as we'd like. Its nice to remember that there is more to life than material possessions and that our children are all very fortunate.

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  10. Laura and worldofamummy thanks for commenting. I'm really pleased you enjoyed my post. Christmas time just seems to run away with me a little bit so this was my way of putting the brakes on x

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  11. You've echoed my thoughts. Had a similar experience in Lhasa. We all need to think more.

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