By: Noushah Arshad
“I’m finished … I’ve lost myself … Can you tell me why is she doing this to me? Why she doesn’t speak to me? I miss her. I don’t feel happy anymore. I don’t feel alive. It’s as if my life is stagnant. There is no charm left. I want to forget her, but I can’t. I can’t study, I can’t laugh heartily. I don’t want to talk to anyone. Oh! What have I done to my life?” His thoughts and feelings were flowing in his words and I was quietly listening to him.
“I sent her flowers and a gift few days back … She never responded. I wanted to know how she felt. I wanted to talk to her. She didn’t take my calls. I feel lonely without her. I know she is not coming back to my life. . . Last evening I saw her with her family, she was smiling and looking pretty as always. I wanted to go to her and talk to her but she went away. I know she is not coming back to my life. But then why am I lingering to this torn world of mine? Why can’t I move on although I want to? Can you help me out of it? I don’t know how I can manage to come out of it. I am not so strong may be …” His words were showing how desperate he was for that lady and how much he felt for her.
“My dear, What if I tell you something that might help you find a way for coming out of this phase of your life? I asked him, looking in his eyes to see how much he wanted to be out of it.
“Yes, please. Help me out of it. I don’t want to be in pain anymore.” He answered promptly.
Once there was a guy named Jerry. He was the manager of a restaurant. He was always in good mood. When someone would ask him how he was doing, he would always reply, “If I were any better I would be twins!”
Many of the waiters at his restaurant quit their jobs when he changed jobs, so they could follow him around from restaurant to restaurant.
Why? Because Jerry was a natural motivator.
If an employee was having a bad day, Jerry was always there, telling the employee how to look on the positive side of the situation. Seeing this style really made me curious, so one day I went up to Jerry and asked him, “I don’t get it! No one can be a positive person all of the time. How do you do it?”
Jerry replied,” Each morning I wake up and say to myself, I have two choices today. I can choose to be in a good mood or I can choose to be in a bad mood. I always choose to be in a good mood.
Each time something bad happens, I can choose to be a victim or I can choose to learn from it. Every time someone comes to me complaining, I can choose to accept their complaining or I can point out the positive side of life. I always choose the positive side of life.”
“But it’s not always that easy,” I protested.
“Yes, it is,” Jerry said.
“Life is all about choices. When you cut away all the junk, every situation is the choice. You choose how you react to situations. You choose how people will affect your mood. You choose to be in a good mood or bad mood. It’s your choice how you live your life.”
Several years later, I heard that jerry accidently did something you are never supposed to do in a restaurant business. He left the backdoor of his restaurant open. In the morning, he was robbed by three armed men. They wanted money. And while Jerry was trying to open the safe box, his hand, shanking from nervousness, slipped off the combination. The robbers panicked and shot him. Luckily, Jerry was found quickly and rushed to the hospital. After eighteen hours of surgery and weeks of intensive care, Jerry was released from the hospital with fragments of bullets still in his body.
I saw Jerry about six months after the accident. When I asked him, how he was, he replied, “If I were any better, I’d be twins. Want to see my scars?”
I declined to see his wounds, but did ask him what had gone through his mind as the robbery took place.
“The first thing that went through my mind was that I should have locked the back door,” Jerry replied. “Then, after they shot me, as I lay on the floor, I remembered that I had two choices: I could choose to live or could choose to die. I choose to live.”
“Weren’t you scared?” I asked.
Jerry continued,” The paramedics were great, they kept telling me I was going to be fine. But when they wheeled me into the emergency room and I saw the expression on the faces of the doctors and nurses, I got really scared. In their eyes, I read, ’He’s a dead man.’ I knew I needed to take action.”
“What did you do?” I asked.
“Well, there was a big nurse shouting questions at me,” said Jerry, “She asked if I was allergic to anything.”
“Yes,” I replied. The doctors and nurses stopped working as they waited for my reply. I took a deep breath and yelled, “Bullets!”
Over their laughter, I told them, “I am choosing to live. Please operate on me as if I am alive, not dead.”
Jerry lived. Thanks to the skill of his doctors, but also because of his amazing attitude. I learned from him that every day you have a choice to either enjoy your life or hate it. The only thing that is truly yours – that no one can control or take from you – is your attitude. So if you can take care of that, everything in life becomes much easier.
He was listening to my story in a thoughtful manner. As I finished it, He asked, “But how can I take care of my attitude in this matter? If I choose to be happy, I remember the times when I was happy with her, and that makes me sad, sad than ever before.”
“My dear, you have a choice to be victim of her forgone love or learn from what she did to you. If you choose to be a victim, you will keep on destroying yourself and your relations for someone who is a mere illusion of your past now. You will keep on suffering for no fault of your own. You will keep on punishing your life and of those related to you. Do you want that?”
“No, absolutely not, I want to make things better for myself.” He answered.
“Then if you don’t want to be a victim, choose to learn from all what happened. Learn your lessons well and life will lead you to greener paths. Don’t grieve on what is no more a part of your present life. Choice is yours. You want to spend a good day or a bad one. Decision is yours. You are what you think of yourself. Choose to think what makes you feel happy in present. Live the moment you are blessed with. God wants you to learn and move on. He doesn’t want you to waste your life for something that is no more a part of it. Things that are gone are not more than dust that wanders in air and disappears with time … Either you can keep on staring in emptiness of skies in search of long gone dust or you can choose to get up and look around on what blessings you have all around you, that you are ignoring and missing just for something that no more exists. Choice is yours!”