The universe is out to get you – but not in the way you might think. The universe is out to get you to be more grateful, more resilient, more patient, and more understanding. The universe is out to make you a better person. When it seems like the universe is really going out of its way to wreak havoc on you, it’s only because it believes you have a lesson to learn or a realization to come to. We (myself included) often are too stuck holding the cynical thought of, “why me?” to do any learning from unfortunate situations – but after a recent experience I have had, I encourage you to trust in the workings of the universe and always search for the silver lining.
A couple weeks ago my boyfriend and I returned to his car after attending Western’s Athletic Awards Gala to find that all my belongings had been stolen. My backpack containing my laptop, my binder of school notes, some of my Team Canada gear, my glasses, some jewellery. Any other day I wouldn’t of had so much stuff in the car, but I had to rush from class straight to the banquet and therefore had many belongings with me. Of course, I was distraught. I sobbed and cursed and wondered what the hell was wrong with people in this world – how can people have the audacity to break into someone else’s car and take their belongings? With my trip to California one week away and exams around the corner, I wasn’t sure how I was going to replace everything in time to prepare for my trip and my finals. Furthermore, I had a paper on my laptop that was due in three days time which I ultimately had to take the time and rewrite, but that first involved buying a brand new laptop. Overall, I was crippled with bitterness. Although I wouldn’t wish it upon anyone, I thought, “of all the cars in the parking lot, in all the parking lots in London, why me? And why right NOW?”.
But then something wonderful happened. As everyone around me selflessly helped me replace all my belongings and school notes, I came to a realization that completely changed my attitude. It’s just stuff. Everything in that bag was replaceable, and for that reason I should be grateful. I realized I was lucky that my loss included only things that I could easily replace. What’s not replaceable are the people who helped me put all the pieces back together – my coach who literally gave me her Team Canada jacket off of her back, my boyfriend who took me everywhere replacing my belongings, my dad who helped me buy a new laptop, my classmates who happily sent me their school notes, my friends who consoled me as I dramatically complained for days straight about how wicked the world is – none of these people were taken from me. Everything that I need to be happy and complete, I still have. It didn’t take them helping me through that chaotic situation for me to realize how important these people are to me, but it was certainly a nice reminder that helped the loss of my belongings suddenly seem very trivial.
I carried this mentality with me into my training these past couple of weeks, and rather than self-destructing when I have a sub-par training session or competition, I tell myself, “well, at least I’m healthy and able to train in the first place”. It often sounds so insensitive when you’re dealing with an unfortunate circumstance and someone says, “It could always be worse”. But it’s true, it could always be worse. Because of that, there is gratitude to be given in every situation life throws at us – no matter how negative you perceive it to be.
If this post sounds familiar its probably because 6 months ago I wrote a post called “4 Things My Week Without a Cellphone Taught Me” after I had my cell-phone stolen. Clearly there is a theme to my lessons and it seems to be the loss of expensive belongings. With great appreciation, universe, I get it! No more thefts please.