After being in the hospital, I received an outpouring of support from friends and family. I, of course, was terrified that if I wasn’t completely “cured”, I would be shipped back to the hospital, like a bad day once in a while wasn’t allowed. As a result, you could say I went back to hiding my emotions. As supportive as people were, I realized that the only person who will ever be there for you is yourself. It sounds harsh, but it’s true. The sooner I realized that, the better it was. So I decided that I needed to be there for me; I needed to be the reason I lived. I made a shift from just surviving by not dying, to actually living. There is quite a distinction in my mind between not dying and living.
I came up with an idea called “One Fun Thing”, that goes in line with my “Surviving by Living” motto. It’s quite simple; everyday I create something for myself to look forward to. Every single day I do something to make me happy. It doesn’t have to be big or extravagant. Maybe it’s that I treat myself to some froyo, or I watch a movie even though I should be studying. Perhaps it means I treat myself to a nice glass of wine, or I make a great new playlist. The options for what I can do are endless, and some days my fun things are bigger than others – like last week I took a bartending class! Today my happy thing is that I’m skipping the gym, because you know what? The-day-after-legs-day sucks and I would much rather sit here with my cup of tea watching Keeping Up With The Kardashians. The point is, no matter what it is, as long as it puts a little smile on your face, it’s worth it. That alone, is reason enough to live until the next day, where you get to do a fun thing all over again! There are going to be bad things every day – you’ll just miss the bus, or your roommate will have finished all the hummus, or you’ll be completely lost in class. So what? There will be another bus, Canada isn’t going to run out of hummus, and who isn’t lost in class???
Try this “One Fun Thing” experiment out. Put in your headphones and walk with a bounce in your step. Smile at 5 strangers even though you don’t want to. Compliment someone. Pay It Forward. Surprise someone you love. Give a person you care about a bear hug. You could save their life, and inadvertently, your own.
Keep Surviving by Living!