Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I am Thankful For...

I am so lonely. I am all alone - always am at this time of the day. It's so easy to get depressed when you are lonely. But as I write, overlooking the front door and as I watch the sun shines through those leaves and those reflections, I began to reflect on things I should be thankful for.

Instead of getting depressed I am making a conscious effort to be thankful, and say hey, things could be worse, my friend. Much much worse.

Thirty years ago I was advised against thinking in that manner for it was not good for your ambition. You should always compare yourself to people and things that are better, to spur you to greater achievements.

Well, that was thirty years ago, may be I needed that then. For now I'm just thankful:

  1. That on this glorious day I'm at home, writing this, and not on an island anywhere near South Korea
  2. That my families and friends are safe and sound too
  3. That I'm able to do what I like doing, in complete peace and freedom
  4. To Grandma for giving me that space, and for being forever more understanding and caring. Of course she can be many other things as well, but to wish for Mother Theresa, Oprah Winfrey, and Nigella Lawson or Anna Olson all rolled into one is a bit of wishful thinking, isn't it?
  5. That my children, though none with double Ph D's are all gainfully employed and earning an honest living. I would really love to see them and wish that they are with us more often and for longer periods, but that's what you get for bringing them up to be busy and to have their own families. I used to dream of becoming Papa Walton, with all my children, their wives and our grandchildren living under one roof. But it's not meant to be, they had to go away...oh, how I miss them...
  6. That in this country food is still plentiful. Granted the cost is increasing every day but you still get to eat what you like, when you like it. It is depressing though to see food being wasted when there are so many who still go without it. 
I'm thankful that my right and left brain are of equal size, as it were: when
undergoing assessment for entering higher secondary school (when 'streaming'
into arts or science was done), the principal couldn't give me a clear advice.
He told me I was okay in both the arts and the sciences, 
so I could choose either. That was a great help!

Now you understand why I'm neither a rocket scientist nor a Shakespeare, 
but just a humble farmer who blogs! I have been blessed with the opportunity to explore and experience the best of both worlds.

Okay I didn't win the Second Crusader Challenge as many one or two thought I would, but, hey, I made a lot of friends and learned more about writing. I'm
grateful for that.

(You'll notice that I've given up on the numbering, Google Chrome is starting to play tricks on me...but no sweat, nobody's counting anyway).

I am thankful that I didn't squander all my money on women wine and song while working, so I was able to build this little nest and buy me this Farm, mua ha ha...

I am grateful that my durians are flowering profusely, and early too. That would mean bountiful harvests and earlier than others to the marketplace, which in turn means some income with much more for family and friends to enjoy.

So the next time you are about to get depressed, remember things could get much worse. Count your blessings.

With every breath we take we have been trained to say two things: God willing, and thank God.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

This post is inspired by L'Aussie. Check out what she's thankful for here. Thanks Denise!


L'Aussie said...

Oh Grandpa, I am so inspired by what you just said. Isn't it wonderful to reflect on our blessings. I can see it did you good and it did me good to read it too! We need to be thankful every day. Your life sounds exotic, so make the most of it over in the jungle with Grandma.

Happy tapping!

pakmat said... always grateful for small mercies, grandpa..cheers..and take care..

Rachael Harrie said...

Grandpa, such lovely things to be thankful for. I've had a tear in my eye reading your list. And good on you for choosing to be positive rather than letting things get you down. Hugs to you.


Grandpa said...

L'Aussie, Rach, thank you! We should all be thankful for the Good Life. All the best with your writing, and Blessings to you both

Bangmat, the way it should be, in accordance with our 'lafaz' saban hari...Semoga aman sejahtera

Faith said...

I know how you feel, and must do the same thing. I count my blessings.

I used to have a house full of husband and children. Now it is only my last child and I. My older children have all moved out of state to pursue their lives.

I am thankful for the friends that choose to love us. They step in as our family. Caring for us when we need help, including themselves in our lives and ours in theirs.

Still, we fight loneliness.

Praying for you and your precious sweetheart to find the Blessing today that will fill the little empty places in your hearts.

Uzoeiy @ Zoi said...

Salam sejahtera grandpa. Made my way here through Uncle Lee's blog. Its my first visit here. some of your list really related to me. I sometimes get depressed, but like you say, remember things could get much worse. So, i will try my best to keep counting God's blessing.

Thank you for sharing a valuable thought grandpa.

Nice day to you.

Grandpa said...

Faith, I have a soft spot for children, sometimes I wish they don't grow up. I know that's not realistic but you know after having them by your side for more than twenty years I find it hard not to miss them...thanks for being around, may your days be filled with happiness

Hi Uzoeiy, welcome to The Farm. Uncle Lee's a fun place to be isn't it? I'm glad you can relate to what I wrote. There's a positive side to everything, just look for it. Take care and God bless

Patricia A. Timms said...

I'm glad you pointed me this way. Your list is one I see in my parent's eyes and grandparent's. Right now my life is so busy with 3small children and it's hard to find time alone, but I know it will come and when it does I'm going to regret wishng it so.

I've been lonely in my life and I've been depressed. The holidays are the worst for this. I hope you cheer up soon and that the blogging world can help you with this. I was depressed a bit before I came upon this bloggig world. I can't seem to find any half intelligent people in my neighborhood worth carrying on practical conversation with. Instead it's about competition. I don't want to compete when I go outside looking for friendship. However, I can relate to you and to all of the bloggers I follow. I'm thankful for that. And for my husband, 3 kids, extended family, and friends.

One day, I would love to chat with you about what you farm. I have a decent sized vegetable garden and several fruiting trees. I could use some tips. I love growing my own food. Hoping for a successful winter garden.

Grandpa said...

Hi Patricia, thanks for dropping by. I hope you find it in your heart to always remember how much your parents and grandparents love you. You would wish for the same thing from your children when they grow up.
I am not a sociable person for the same reason as yours - too much emphasis on trying to outdo rather than support one another.
You are welcome any time, you know I can go on and on about farming!

The clock here has just struck 12. It's Nov 25th, so HAPPY THANKSGIVING to you and your family Patricia, and good luck with your garden

Uncle Lee said...

Hi Grandpa, I'm guessing I'm much older than you, ha ha, but I have always kept a positive outlook on life.
Even when I lost my job a long time ago and practically down to my last few dollars...I never lost that you mentioned, there's always people worse off than us.

And then my stars came into their right alignment and I was offered my dream job....and never looked back.
And no matter even when I was an absentee father, husband....I kept that smile and happy face....
As I believe feeling depressed is my staff.

And when the going gets tough, I go fishing, ha ha.
Hey, 25 years I never took a real vacation...not one day off sick leave, worked 7 day weeks too....luckily I had my sense of humour and can laugh at things.

I have always believed too that our life is not a dress rehearsal, we only get to play one round....
And I can tell you, I am not the only one who would love to be where you are, your own farm, fresh air and all, away from the maddening crowd.

You stay easy, stay healthy and have fun.....and remember, you have what others can only dream off. Lee.

Joanna St. James said...

Just like you grandpa I am being positive to do otherwise is not even worth the thought.
I am grateful for your sense of humour.

Wan Sharif said...

Thank you for sharing your thought.. your loneliness.. your positive outlook on life..
May Allah bless us "keikhlasan, sifat bersyukur, sifat sifat penduduk syurga" ..
Like Uncle LEE.. I believe you have what others can only dream of..
Stay positive... always

Grandpa said...

Hi Lee, thanks for dropping by. That Tg Malim love story had to make way for this piece, so come by later, ok...
We are as old as we feel,I guess, but one thing for sure neither one of us should be addressing the other as 'uncle', he he. And the fact that you spelled 'terima kaseh' with an 'e' you must be from around my time!
I know you've done a great job and an excellent service to your company Lee
Just like you after a couple of testing grounds I found a job that I could be passionate about and lasted 25 years, triumphs yes, but not without trials and tribulations, I might add.
The only real vacation I took was two years before I retired, and went driving around the US with the family - from LA to 'Frisco, to Vegas...uh, those were the days...

Stay well and take care Lee

Hi Joanna, good to see you! Great to know you are all positive and cheerful - make life so much more fun isn't it...A little humor brightens up even your dullest day :) Take care, and all the best with your writing

Grandpa said...

Salam Wan, just missed you there... Thanks for coming by. Bagi kita lafaz Alhamdullilah bagi setiap anugerah sekecil mana pun menandakan kesyukuran...
You too stay positive, semoga diberkatiNya segala usaha anda

Bimbimbie said...

According to my dad waking up and being able to get out of bed is a positive wrapped in pink. Think Pink - you can't be blue when you think in Pink - he's almost 80 and I think he's right.
So sending pink Smiles to you*!*

Grandpa said...

Bimbimbie,thank you! Your dad is very lucky to have you around. Sending back Smiles for happy days ahead :)

small farm girl said...

That was a beautiful post. Sometimes we do forget to be thankful for things we DO have. Thanks for the reminder.

Anonymous said...

And I am thankful to you, Grandpa, for reminding me to be thankful of all the blessings - large and small - that have come my way throughout the years.

Grandpa said...

small farm girl, thank you! You are right sometimes we fret and yearn for things we don't have or may not even need, and forget that we already have so much, what else could we possibly want. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving

Adrea Wh@tever, you are welcome. I gather that you have a great life and a wonderful family. Take care and stay cheerful...

Maria Zannini said...

Every once in a while I grouse about my bum knee or the pinched nerve in my back and then I see a small child strapped to a wheelchair or hooked to a breathing machine.

Somehow my aches and injuries disappear and I'm grateful that even though I'm slower, I'm still able to get out there and work my garden and drive my husband crazy. :)

Today is Thanksgiving in the US. From my family to yours, God bless.

Grandpa said...

Hi Maria, good to see you. What you say is so true, if we keep thinking only of ourselves, and our 'miseries'.
I used to tell my kids not to complain that the food on the table is not good enough that there are others who don't get to eat as often.

I think your hubby's worried for you - be careful with that back,ok.
Hope your vege patch is coming along fine.
May God's blessings be with you and your family too Maria. Happy Thanksgiving

Anonymous said...

Hi brother. Am being strictly Anon not wanting to call each other Uncle, haha.

You farming for a living? You don't sound being one. More of keeping yourself occupied, a bit the gentleman farmer of Englaaaand, you sound to me.

But do tell us more about your farm. Especially your prolific flowering healthy looking durian branches. I have a patch or two of grafted 5-6 year-old trees but a lot of phytophtora attacks. Can sure learn a thing or two from you other than the the fertilizer regime and the Aliette treatment.

I think I have similar beliefs about life like you. I did the Europe driving, though not the US one that I also much wanted.

But the canker problem with my trees does become exasperating at times. I believe that God is great, makes sure that everybody has problems so that it is always fair.
So I envy your healthy looking and early fruiting trees.


Grandpa said...

Anon, welcome to The Farm. You get the prize for being the first anon commenting on my blog. You can still tell your name without us calling each other Uncle, ha ha.

No, I am not farming for a living. In fact I'm done with doing anything for a living, now I just concentrate on living. Not 'living it up', mind you - just enjoying the simple things in life, and being thankful for my existence.

Of course when my fruit production exceeds the "ciak beh liau" limit I have to sell rather than waste them.

You seem to know a lot about durian. If you read my earlier posts, a number of my trees died or were affected by canker when I left the farm unattended for two years.

You know the cure too, but for canker prevention is always better than cure. Aeration, drainage, anything to get rid of dampness or excess moisture.