It is rare to find a person who does not wish to go back in time and change events that happened. They must already know what has taken me a lifetime to learn; it would not do much good, for if we changed our experiences, we would not be the persons we are today.
Our life as an interwoven quilt
I like using the image of a quilt to describe life. Quilts can be colorful and flamboyant, many containing completely different sections magnificently connected to each other. Our lives are much the same way, rich, colorful, deep and mysterious. Every event we experienced has painstakingly woven every stich in our life quilt.
The person you are today is an unfinished product and each new day adds new sections to your ongoing creation.
Like many others, adults taught me as a child to judge the events in my life as good or evil. This may have served me well in establishing my sense of morality, but it certainly blurred how I saw life. In particular, I looked at my traumatic incidents as damning elements that poisoned my existence. Returning to my quilt metaphor, I was distinguishing my life as a mishmash of good and bad rather than noticing its overall beauty. As I have grown in age, I have learned to appreciate and honor the person I have become. But seeing parts of my life with gratitude and others with disdain takes away my ability to cherish and feel gratitude for it.
Treasuring our lives must include our gratitude for every single aspect of it. This does not mean you look beyond the evil events. It doesn’t even mean you must forgive those who hurt you, although I highly recommend you do this. Cherishing your life means you understand you are the person you are today because of every single thing you experienced. That is not a bad thing.
Remember, the person you have become has motivated you to pursue your dreams and passions and share them with the world. Your life is precious exactly as it is and it makes a difference. The world needs you to learn and apply your purpose.
Until you learn to feel and express gratitude for everything that has happened to you, your perception of life will be blurry. The day you can appreciate the value in every experience, you will become calmer and more balanced. You will be able to see everyone’s life more clearly and become less judgmental and more accepting of their struggles.
The people who made the biggest difference in my life were those who found that life balance. It began when they chose gratitude for every part of their lives.
Remember, paying gratitude for your life forward will bring you much joy and contentment.
Previously published here and reprinted with the author’s permission.
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