17 October 2011

micro-to-macro (and we're not talking economics)

If you are really ever feeling like your life could not get any worse, just think of someone else's life and their struggles. And since you can read this blog because you're at a computer, you have it a lot better than some other people.
I don't do this too often, even though I should, but it's called the micro-to-macro approach. I made it up. Well, I made the name up at least. It's where you think of your own life and your amenities, and you compare it to someone who had less than you. It doesn't have to be someone starving in Southeast Asia or Africa, it could be someone you know who doesn't have as much as you. Because there is always someone who has less than you. No matter what.
So we all complain about something every once in a while. Like today, I was complaining about finishing a major AP Lit assignment. It's a big one and it counts for a lot of credit. But when I thought about it, there are girls in other countries who aren't even allowed to go to school. They can't even learn how to read or write anything, even their name. And instead I thought about how I have the opportunity to take a college-level class that can better prepare me for when I get there. Even in the US, AP classes are not offered everywhere. I know a girl who doesn't take any APs because they don't have them at her school, but she's thinking about taking the exams anyway. I am literally prepared from day one to take the exam and pass, and succeed. So I can automatically have a better chance at everything because of my circumstances.
The same ones I was complaining about a few hours ago.
Everyone has a hard life in some way; it could be more hard than easy, or more easy than hard. Sometimes we even envy people who seem to have everything go their way, but it just means they hide their problems well, because everyone has something - at least one thing - that bothers them everyday. It could be mental, physical, medical, social, academic, you name it. But sometimes some of us have smaller problems than others. And that's what sets us apart. So instead of thinking of what doesn't go right, I'm starting to think about what does go right, or what seems to be going my way a lot of the time.
I read an article yesterday about a boy who played football for the high school team. He was a junior, 16 years old. He was hit in the game, like any other game, and he fell backwards and hit his head. They took him to the hospital to look for damage but he was dead when they got there. Bleeding on the brain. A few weeks ago my sister also got hit in the same way. She was wearing a helmet just like this kid was, and she was wearing pads. Like this kid she blacked out for a few seconds, but then like this kid she bounced back and walked off fine. But she's still here. And somehow I wonder how I can complain when I realize things like this can happen. It was a miracle. And I think in life we forget a lot about those things.

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