Saturday, May 18, 2013

The palette I work with

It is supremely hard to convince a teenager that there is more to life than the very narrow existence they have led this far. As they exclaim over bullying on Facebook and where they sit during lunch mod, they are not looking to hear "this too shall pass". That in itself is a foreign concept to them. Teenagers live very much in the now. They simply don't BELIEVE that in a few short years what was on their timeline or what went viral on YouTube will be forgotten or just one more thing to chuckle over.
As I try to explain to my son what a gift his life is, he cannot see beyond the pain.
This is a generation used to instant gratification and high def, extreme sports and mind blowing technologies. Mindfulness is not taught- iPad technology IS.
I am grateful to be alive with every jaw dropping sunrise, with every smile, with every lesson learned.
But I am not sixteen.
I explained to my son what an opportunity he has- just by being born. His very birth in the blossoming age of Aquarius is a gift. We are reaching new frontiers every single day. Not only was he born here on earth- honestly the best planet in the galaxy, and stunningly beautiful, ripe for exploration- but he was born in America. He has freedom and wealth and the chance to succeed. He was born healthy- a big plus. He is good looking and intelligent, qualities that when paired with being a white male can get him far ( whether that is right or not-it is the status quo).
So, earth, america, healthy, white and male ... Right there he has the basic palette to create a life and make it whatever he dreams up. Add to that palette that he is loved and not abused, admired and not rejected, conscientious and respectful, spiritual and wise beyond his years.
If he only saw past the surface and could appreciate how amazing these gifts are, he would never seek to throw them away.
There are children digging through city dumps for grains of rice, children born without limbs, abandoned children... Children whose entire life will exist of war, AIDS and starvation.
How blessed we are.
If we wake up every single day grateful, we will feel abundant.
I hope that we teach our children gratitude and show them just how much they have to offer.

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