We have got it good. We are living, experiencing, life.
As we should all know by now, this will not always be the case. One day we will die. The end. Death is inevitable, so it is nothing that we should fear. In fact, we should consider giving more appreciation and respect to death because it is something that is always there for us — we can really count on it. Life, on the other hand, can leave us at any given moment. Time to savor it.
So, more on life. It’s pretty great, right? We get to breathe air, connect and communicate with this planet and the people on it, feel deeply, love, create and think. Obviously, human beings have ruined a lot of the inherent beauty that life offers, but we are only human. We make mistakes and we hurt one another and our surroundings. We are constantly blessed, however, with the opportunity to learn from our mistakes and to love and respect one another and this beautiful land. We get to be a teeny-tiny piece of this puzzle called life. What a gift!
And, woooah, what an extra blessing and privilege for those of us who are young and learning in this place called UC Berkeley. Not only do we get the gift of life, but many of us are granted access to the concentrated perspectives that this place offers. We are a group of people thrown together into one space from vastly different backgrounds that have the ability to share and study stories, experiences and research with one another to further our understandings and conceptions of life. We have the opportunity to address, analyze and hopefully help solve the many problems that have been created by humans. We are met with so many possibilities and chances in this place. We are young and learning in life. How glorious is that!
Unfortunately, it seems that we do not remind ourselves of this glory as much as we ought to. Specifically, UC Berkeley students have a tendency to get bogged down and stressed out by relatively minute matters in the grand scheme of things, myself included. For instance, students keep spending their time looking forward to what’s next or feeling a need to control their very unpredictable futures. Many of us trip or become anxious about something that is miles ahead of where we are, which are situations that we have little to no power over. Others use their time living with cynical and pessimistic viewpoints. When we spend our valuable lives like this, we are gypping ourselves out of the beauty of being young, learning and present.
None of the above is to say that life is not hard, painful or unfair for everything or everyone that is involved in it. But it may be to all of our best interests to really appreciate what we have before it’s gone — everything that we have. Instead of focusing on what we want for ourselves or what we do not have, focus on the beauty of everything that we do have.
We only get one moment for each moment, so make the moments worthwhile. In other words, appreciate and enjoy being where you are while you’re there. “There” will be gone before we know it.