Grateful for all that I have

Faith Dusevic is a reporter at the Golden Star.

“If you have food in the fridge, clothes on your back, a roof over your head and a place to sleep you are richer than 75% of the world. If you have money in the bank, your wallet and some spare change, you are among the top 8% of the world’s wealthy. If you have never experienced the danger of battle, imprisonment, torture or starvation, you are luckier than 500 million alive and suffering. If you woke up this morning with more health than illness, you are more blessed than the million people who will not survive this week. If you can read this message, you are luckier than the 3 billion people in the world who can’t read at all.”

That’s a quote that’s been circling the internet for months, if not longer. I’ve seen it enough times that when I see it now, I usually just continue surfing the net. Not that it never impacted me, but more that even reading the first line I know the rest.

As I was thinking of what to write my editorial about, I stumbled upon this quote again. In all honesty, it doesn’t matter if you have seen it once or a million times, you still get a pang of guilt for complaining about that cold coffee or for the fact that you can’t afford a new car yet.

Our own town has people in difficult situations, some with no food, some with no permanent shelter. Travel three hours to Calgary and the fact that Canadians suffer from homelessness is even more evident. Travel to another part of the world and chances are you’ll never look at your own life the same again.

Even reading this simple quote should make a person rethink their perspective. It’s hard sometimes not to think we are hard done by. Everyone complains, everyone wants more than they have, everyone forgets from time to time just how lucky they are – I am certainly no exception.

But if we look at things from the view of 75 per cent of the world’s eyes – we have it pretty good, really good. We don’t go to sleep wondering if we will make it through the night due to war, and if you can afford to buy a coffee with your spare change you’re amongst the top 8 per cent of the world.

I’m not saying I don’t think we deserve to be sad. There are a lot of difficult things people go through every day. Tragedies that are truly unfair, people who leave the world too soon. But if anything, this quote puts things into a better light, it shows that those tragedies are the things we should worry about and be sad about. It shows that there are things more important out there than simply having a bad day because you stubbed your toe or you’re mad at someone.

Maybe you don’t even agree with what I am saying, or maybe this editorial just bores you. But if you have to take anything out of it, be grateful you have the ability to read it at all.