If Only I Could Fit This Post on a Bumper Sticker

One exam down; two more to go (and the first was the hardest, so it’s all pie from here).

Have I told you lately how grateful I am for everything? I mean it: every thing.

It’s a weird sensation, this  gratefulness that overwhelms me at the drop of a hat; it’s certainly unusual for me. Normally, I’m a bitter, cynical old broad with nothing more to say than how life annoys me. And don’t worry, I’m still pretty cynical as far as cynics go, but these past few months have stirred some unnamed emotion in me the likes of which I have never to this day experienced.

If I had to name it (a task which is proving to be surprisingly difficult), I guess I’d call it awareness.

I’m aware of all I have to be thankful for (food to eat and only two semesters left of university, to name a few). For all the many blessings my Heavenly Father has given me.

I’m aware of how much I love my husband, my family, my few (yet unquestionably valuable) real friends.

I’m aware of the big picture of my life, or at least a bigger picture than I’ve ever fit into a single frame before.

I’m aware of my daily interactions with people, of how the simple act of meeting someone’s gaze as we pass each other in the hall can convey a myriad of meanings.

I’m aware that spring will come someday, even if today is not that day (and it certainly is not). I know it will come. It has to come.

A recent commenter noticed that I’ve been taking on a more optimistic tone about life lately, a side of me she rarely sees, and she said she enjoyed the change; I hadn’t really noticed it until she mentioned it, but it’s true. And ever since I read that comment, I have found myself more consciously trying to squelch those little bursts of pessimism that so often pop up during my day-to-day whatnots. It’s amazing how people’s expectations of me can affect my actions, for the positive or otherwise.

A few months ago I had a talk with a lady who always seems to say the thing I most need to hear, and what I got out of our conversation was this: if I send good vibes out to every person I come in contact with—good vibes being a silent, “Hey, pal, hope you’re doing well,” or some other sort of mental blessing, for lack of a better word—then those vibes will come back to me tenfold. It’s like karma or a goodness boomerang or something. (By the way, this is all paraphrasing a few ancient and not-so-ancient philosophers, none of whose names I will ever remember…just so you don’t think I thought of this myself. I didn’t. I’m not nearly deep enough for that. I’m more in the wading pool depth of philosophy. Kiddie pool, even. No, PUDDLE.)

Anyway, as I walked away from that discussion, my initial thought was, “That’s some pretty hokey stuff.” But a few minutes later I entered the Mayberry Mercantile to buy a couple quick groceries, and when I was checking out, I thought I’d at least give it a shot. So I sent a good vibe the cashier’s way—no big thing—payed my tab, and when I walked out of the store, I looked down on the sidewalk and saw an envelope with my name written on it in big, boldface letters, and inside that envelope was a hundred dollar bill.

No, not really.

As a matter of fact, nothing really miraculous has happened. Anticlimactic, I know. Sorry. But if you want to know the truth, the past couple of months have been crummier than usual—husband’s job drama, broken furnace and water heater, lousy weather, copious amounts of schoolwork, the unpaid shutdown of my blog revenue by the Google Adsense™ moguls. By all accounts, this good vibe stuff seems to have actually had a negative impact on my life.

Except for the fact that through all these hiccups, I’ve been able to maintain the most unusual of positive outlooks on life, knock on wood.

It really is uncharacteristic of me.

So while sending out the good vibes might not actually give me anything tangible in return, it seems that the mere act of wishing people well—truly wishing them well, not just thinking the words—makes me consciously think cheerfuller thoughts on a very regular basis. And when most of the thoughts I think during the day are kind rather than snooty, well…it takes a lot more to bring me down from that kind of attitude high.

Which is not to say that I can’t be brought down (I’m looking at you, ridiculous girl sitting next to me who SMACKED your gum with your bovine mouth WIDE OPEN for the ENTIRETY of my THREE-HOUR FINAL EXAM earlier today {I was SO not sending her happy vibes [more like death threats, if you want to know the truth]}). I certainly still own my snark.

But as I sat in that quiet (except for the chomping next to me) classroom today and felt myself grip the pen tighter and scribble more furiously with every passing gum smack (my blood pressure rises just thinking about it), I was amazed to find that at least I was able to focus on my essay enough to formulate coherent sentences instead of going blank-minded and tuning out everything but the ear-piercing sound of that little hussy’s SMACK SMACK SMACKING (which is what I would normally do), effectively ruining my chances at acing the final exam.

That wouldn’t’ve been very productive.

And I’m aware that that was probably the greatest blessing I enjoyed today.

So thank you, God, karma, My Name is Earl, and everyone else that has helped or somehow contributed to my reaching this profound epiphanical moment. The gift of awareness is a beautiful thing.

I invite you all to try it and report to me your findings.

Oh, yeah, and also: I wish you well.

About Camille

I'm Camille. I have a butt-chin. I live in Canada. I was born in Arizona. I like Diet Dr. Pepper. Hello. You can find me on Twitter @archiveslives, Facebook at facebook.com/archivesofourlives, instagram at ArchivesLives, and elsewhere.
This entry was posted in change, health and vitality, It's All Good, my edjumacation and me, Overall Good Things, self-actualisation, what I'm about and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to If Only I Could Fit This Post on a Bumper Sticker

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention Archives of Our Lives » If Only I Could Fit This Post on a Bumper Sticker -- Topsy.com

  2. chelsie says:

    Oh, I love you too (assuming I was mentioned) and I loved this post!

  3. Aw, yay.

    What happened with Google?? Lame.

  4. I noticed that every time I write a real post (as opposed to an update on recent events), it is usually a complaining post. It is easier to write and easier to think about. How sad is it that we see it as easier to live a griping life? Because looking back, it has really made life much more difficult. I will try to be better. Thanks for the encouragement. I wish you the best, as well.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Thanks for the inspiration. I will try to be a little bit better and happier. I understand what you’re saying; ever since I read The Great and Terrible I’ve felt similarly. We have so much to be thankful for. You really must put it on your list of things to do while here this summer. Anyway, I’m proud of you for trying to be happy. Because really, why not? That reminds me of my husband. Sometimes when I ask him why he loves me he says, “Why not?” At first I took that as, “How flippant! The lazy turd doesn’t want to think of specific things that he loves about me. How inconsiderate!” (What a hypocrite I am!) Then I realized that I needed to change my perspective. Instead I could think, “Wow! He thinks there are so many reasons to love me that there isn’t a reason not to. He must really love me.” Anyway, sorry for the nonsensical rambling. It reminded me of your post, though. (The story, not the nonsensical rambling.)

    And by the way, kudos to you for still being able to take your test with that inconsiderate heathen chomping like a cow during your test. I would have cursed every curse word I know in my head instead of take my test. What stamina! What endurance! What tenacity! My skin is crawling just thinking of your dilemma. I am truly, truly sorry. Please know that I am sincere when I say that I totally understand how you feel. My whole junior year of Social Studies I had a gum chomper AND popper in my class. Every single day, without fail. I wanted to shoot her.

  6. Granmama says:

    WHo was that person that gave you the “on-target” perspective? I love how you are using Becky Bailey’s Conscious Discipline on YOURSELF without even having children. The act of positive intent is really an amazing concept. You’re doing it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  7. I really did think that you found an envelope with your name on it and money inside. I had to re-read it!

    I’m so glad that you have been able to look at the challenges in your life with a new perspective. Thanks for being an example!

    Remember when I was pregnant and I was SOOOOO mad at a guy at the testing center who kept sniffing? Or was he clearing his throat? Either way, I was not a very kind person with my thoughts that day. So, what is more annoying… the gum smacking during your final or people chomping on carrot sticks? :)

  8. Pingback: Archives of Our Lives » Survival Mode

  9. DeAnna says:

    I haven’t had much time for reading lately, but am so glad I decided to check up on your bloggin! I have been working hard at ditching my pessimisstic attitude and honestly it is HARD! I have been that way since I was about ten or eleven years old. I could have a very long conversation on this subject and trying to let the optimism shine. I am trying and succeeding most moments, it is when I stop being aware of my attitude that the cynicism reigns. Great post!!

  10. Alexa Mae says:

    You little trickster you! $100 bill. That would be awesome. Don’t you loathe crummy months? Luckily there is always a bright side, even if it is really found on the sidewalk in a envelope with your name on it. So long as it isn’t anthrax, that is.

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