I like to share the stories that sum up my life with people, not because it is perfect, but because it is relatable. I discovered a long time ago in a very interesting way that everyone of us is going through one struggle or the other and though the struggles may be different, at the end of the day the solutions are pretty much laid down on some basic principles. I remember one time when someone confided in me and started sharing her struggles with me. I am very bad at sympathizing with people. If I dare tune into my emotional side, I will start crying. I can cry more than the bereaved, you have no clue.
What I now do is to channel the opposite reaction. Instead of trying to feel sorry and emotional, I try to be brave and start talking about why you too need to be. I can't stand to see people suffer, and everyday I pray that God matches my heart with enough money to channel causes that can help improve people's lives. I have also realized over the years that sometimes, people do not need money.
An example is this story.
Since I realized I was not good with sympathizing and all that, I started to share my story with her. I told her about the many times I wanted to give up but instead decided to be courageous. I told her about the times when I had lost all hope and somehow hope came through along the line.
I think it was when I told her that I have never been around for anyone's birthday in my family for the past one decade she looked at me strangely. Yes, people look at me like I have everything going for me. I am schooling abroad that's "the good life". I constantly fight giving into depression. I look at everything as the sacrifices I have to make and I keep holding on. Going to a strange place and striving to survive. Two things can happen. You can strive to brave it or give in. I have been living this life for as long as I can remember and it has been a huge success, if I should say so myself. The last birthday I celebrated with my dad was probably when I was still a child. I longed for the years when I will not be occupied in school so I can actually spend October (when every member of my family had their birthdays) with them. I could not even rush back to meet my dad alive last year, talk more of hoping to celebrate his birthday. She stopped sobbing as I was sharing my story, looked at me and said "you are a strong person".
I had no clue what I was doing. It only occurred to me after she told me some days later "because of you I understood how important it is not to give up. You were so right, things cannot always be wrong, if you try to survive the stages when they are wrong, you will reach the point when they are right."
Absolutely! To be honest when I was saying these things to her, I just said them like the classic encouraging words you can give to someone who was obviously tired of life. I was coming more from the point of view of "What do you gain by allowing yourself to be weighed down by situations or possibly taking your life?
This rough phase will be over and the good parts will come. Just hang in there"
It was a humbling and interesting moment for me because I was learning from her what she said she learnt from me. All I know that happened was that in a bid to encourage her, I spoke words that made so much sense to her than I could have possibly imagined. She made me understand those words better. It's a big lesson I can never forget.
The fact that you have decided not to give up means that you have decided to fight, to stay strong, to make the things you want to happen.
When I experience trying moments in my life, I remember these words and reassure myself that only the strong can survive. I decided to share these words that have kept me going for a while now with you because I know it is a sure fire one that works in almost every aspect of life.
As long as you are in the running, anything can happen at any point in time.
I doubt if I have explained this perfectly for you to see what I mean, I will give it a shot with illustrations just like I love to do some other time, but in the meantime, just understand that nothing can conquer you until you decide that you want it to.