Today, I met the woman whose family I adopted for Christmas. At an LRT station I gave her the gifts that I had purchased for her kids and it was in our conversation that I realized something. How truly blessed I am. Her husband had suffered from a major injury and the family was suffering financially as well as emotionally. After a rough few months she’s looking forward to the New Year where she’ll be starting a great new job. In talking with her I saw two things, sadness for the struggles that life has put her through and as well as genuine appreciation and gratefulness. She thanked me over and over again and hoped that good deeds return to me ten-fold. It was then that I realized, I didn’t need it to.
I have a loving family who I’ll be going on a road trip with to Disneyland in a week, a warm bed to sleep in, food on the table that’s been paid for and friends that would drop everything if I needed their help. My job doesn’t buy me a Range Rover but I walk into work happy to be there and am fortunate enough to work with some of the happiest and funniest people I have ever met. And one thing that I have noticed is that, price tags only go so far, but true meaning is in the relationships you build with the people around you. It would have been one thing to hit “donate” on a website, and I am in no way discouraging you to contribute to charitable organizations, but there is something magical about meeting the people you’re helping and spending time getting to know them. It makes the experience so much more, real.
This Christmas maybe you’ll be disappointed that you didn’t get an Xbox One or a new iPhone but instead of looking for what you’re missing take a look at what you already have. I can guarantee that the time spent with your family decorating the tree or sharing stories with friends at Secret Santa is something invaluable. And when you start to see, just like I did, that you already have everything – find someone to give back to. Because if we don’t appreciate the people in our lives and give to the people that need us then what happiness are we withholding to others and ourselves? Walking away from that meeting gave me a heartwarming feeling that I can’t fully describe to you, so all I can say is try it for yourself and you’ll know what I mean.
Now that I’m done with the cheesiness, onto the cute stuff! These polar bears want to wish you all