The 30 Days of Gratitude Challenge: Days 06 to 09 – Nature, Books, & Travels

Ciao Chums! I decided to keep doing these Gratitude challenges because the inspiration and the focus on uplifting and positive thoughts is a grand welcome at the moment. I’ll be playing catch-up with them over the next couple of days, so please bear with me. I shall slowly starting making my return to blogging again since things with family and my duties there have essentially reached their peak. Truth be told, I’m ready to be done with it all.

For more information about the challenge, check out my introductory post here.

Day 06: What in nature are you most grateful for?

Rain. I am always grateful for rain because it brings me the most comfort No matter how terrible I’m feeling, health-wise, or how much I’m having a bad mental health day, standing outside in the rain for a few moments always makes me feel like I’m being cleansed of negative energy, and somehow I know I’ll be okay.

A close second would be flowers blooming. It’s a constant reminder of the impermanence of life, which helps me not hold on to things outside of my control, and it also allows me to show gratitude for the beauty in my life in that exact moment. You never know when it will wilt away to make room for new opportunities and new memories to blossom.

Day 07: What book are you most grateful for?

Dune by Frank Herbert as it has a significant amount of sentimental value for me. It was the first science-fiction book I ever read, thus creating a lifelong obsession with the genre, and it was one of the first books my brother gave to me. Another one that I’m most grateful for is Saints and Misfits by S.K. Ali as it was the very first book I read with #OwnVoices Muslim representation and the first one where I saw myself being represented in literature. That book showed me how important stories about and involving marginalised people by marginalised voices is, especially in today’s climate.

Day 08: What lesson in life are you most grateful for experiencing?

This is a difficult one to answer because the lesson I’m most grateful for is also the one that I hate the most as it’s the most traumatising. No matter how hard you try to seek validation and acceptance, and even respect, from other people, you will never be satisfied. They cannot give you the kind of comfort and acceptance that you’re seeking for it can only come from within.

I spent years, years, trying to gain validation from my mother. I did everything she ever wanted. Then I made one stupid mistake as a teenager, and after many years of struggling, we reconnected. Recently, however, I’ve learned that I will never be good enough for her. She’ll never accept me as a human being because I decided a long time that I needed to live for myself, regardless of what that meant. This past month she basically admitted that she’ll never see me as an equal or respect me, and she’ll never be proud of anything I accomplish as it’s not what she envisioned for me. It destroyed me, especially when I considered all of the abuse–psychological and physical–that I suffered as a child and adolescent just to make her proud. Nevertheless, it gave me strength to stop looking to others in finding meaning for my existence. That had to come from me and only me. I may have lost my mother, not that I probably ever had her to begin with (hindsight), yet I found self-worth, which is a feeling that’s so indescribable.

Day 09: What place have you travelled that you’re most grateful for?

Seattle. I visited Seattle with Sir Besty in 2016 and it was my first-time leaving California since I arrived here as a kid. I fell in love with the city, and the food, and found a place that I know will be an excellent city to call home one day; a lovely, rainy realm to start over as I work towards moving to where I really want to live, British Columbia.

7 thoughts on “The 30 Days of Gratitude Challenge: Days 06 to 09 – Nature, Books, & Travels

  1. That life lesson, though! I can relate a lot… Although I still haven’t been able to put everything out. I don’t care about validation from strangers… But I’m always looking for it when it comes to closed ones… Something that made me become way too much perfectionist and too hard with myself. In a brighter note, I’ve developed myself in what I think as a great human being… On the sadder note, I’m not fully happy with myself, bah

    • I think this is one of those things that people will probably constantly struggle with in one form as another as we go through life. We’ll always meet someone (or ppl) that are going to test us and our resolve in many different ways. I think it also allows us to constantly keep growing and evolving, strength-wise.

      You’re a wonderful human being and I’m so happy to call you friend. I know in my heart that one day you will become someone that you can be very happy and proud of. Honestly, you’re very wise and caring, and those are lovely things to be happy with. 🙂

  2. Yay Seattle! Rain is the best, and your books are good ones, I haven’t read Saints & Misfits yet but want to. As for the life lesson, I think sometime we need to suffer that sort of weight and burden so we can come out the other side. Like a sword being forged, we have to go through flame and pounding to become a sharp work of art.

    • That is a very important life lesson and I think everyone learns it at different points in their life. I complain that it took away all of my 20s, but I’m glad it happened at that time rather than when I was in my 40s or 50s.

    • If you don’t mind rain, I highly recommend it. They have so many amazing places to eat and are super inclusive. It was the only city that I’ve been to (not that I’ve been to a lot) that had Halal hot dogs at the local hot dog stand. They also had Kosher and veggie ones too. Plus, their bookstores are fantastic.

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