There are different ways of feeling lonely, aren’t there?
You can be in a room full of people and still feel lonely. You can be living a seemingly healthy and happy life and yet feel lonely.
High functioning depression. Ever heard the name? You could be having the best job, the best family and yet be affected by depression. Bet you haven’t.
Even if you did, what did you do about it? Did you check if your loved ones fall into that category? When was the last time you were kind to a stranger?
I met a guy at the railway station the other day. It was ‘Rakshabandhan’ or a day when sisters tie a sacred thread on their brothers’ wrists as they vow to protect you lifelong in India. It’s a really significant day for those who follow this tradition. People were rushing onto the platform to catch their trains whereas I was walking out of the station, towards home, after a long day at work ( P.S. If you’re a medical student, healthcare industry doesn’t consider certain festivals as holidays for which we would get leave in school. )
He came to me and asked why I was sad. I was shocked for two minutes because the world we live in today, every daughter is taught to be wary of strangers talking to them for any reason. I regained my composure and assured him that I was doing absolutely fine. He smiled and told me that I must be somebody’s sister too and today must be a really happy day for me as I would be meeting my brothers to tie the ‘rakhi’ or the sacred thread. He told me that I looked really tired and stressed and that I should forget my worries today and spend some time with my family to unwind. He shared excitedly that he himself was going to meet his sister in the locality for the said festival. I decided to put my faith in the goodwill of strangers for once and smiled, returning his kind gesture. I agreed with him and went in the direction of my home.
That day had started out like any other, it was a long and stressful day and I was more relieved to catch my train home, rather than being happy about rakshabandhan or anything else, for that matter. But just those few kind words, especially coming from a stranger, put a smile on my face for the remainder of that entire day. He didn’t say anything really great, actually. They were just a few simple but caring words. Just the realization that even today , some apparent strangers can be kind to you , be caring and not every random guy on the street is out to hurt you , made a huge difference. I think the problem with us today is that we’re used to assuming the worst. We’re always taught to be on guard ( which isn’t always a bad thing, for example for self defense) but in the process, I feel we’ve somewhere lost our faith in humanity. We’ve lost the ability to see the good in people. Even if someone compliments us today, usually we either assume that the person is sweet talking to get his work done or is being sarcastic and actually making fun of us. We fail to appreciate the possibility that maybe that person might genuinely like us. This suspicion of looming bad things happening eventually creeps into our heads, ultimately making us sad, suspicious and dissatisfied souls.
I think he was right. We need to be happier. We need to smile more. We need to spend time with our loved ones and tell them that we love them , while we still have the chance.
We need more love in this world. More goodwill. More faith. And most importantly, the ability to gracefully accept mistakes and failures, as well as remain humble for our successful endeavors.
Spread love because you never know who needs two kind words to continue living peacefully. Be kinder.