Loneliness can affect us very deeply and there are people who seem to have no hope out of it. But one can take attitudes and make noble choices which can bring true meaning.
This story is about a beautiful, expensively dressed lady who complained to her psychiatrist that she felt that her whole life was empty, it had no meaning. So, the lady went to visit a counselor to seek out happiness. The counselor called over the old lady who cleaned the office floors. The counselor then said to the rich lady “I’m going to ask Mary here to tell u how she found happiness. All I want u to do is listen to her.” So the old lady put down her broom and sat on a chair and told her story:
“Well, my husband died of malaria and three months later my only son was killed by a car. I had nobody. I had nothing left. I couldn’t sleep, I couldn’t eat, I never smiled at anyone, I even thought of taking my own life. Then one evening a little kitten followed me home from work. Somehow I felt sorry for that kitten. It was cold outside, so I decided to let the kitten in. I got some milk, and the kitten licked the plate clean. Then it purred and rubbed against my leg and, for the first time in months, I smiled.
Then I stopped to think, if helping a little kitten could make me smile, may be doing something for people could make me happy. So, the next day I baked some biscuits and took them to a neighbor who was sick in bed. Every day I tried to do something nice for someone. It made me so happy to see them happy. Today, I don’t know of anybody who sleeps and eats better than I do. I’ve found happiness, by giving it to others.” When she heard this, the rich lady cried. She had everything that money could buy, but she had lost the things which money cannot buy. “The beauty of life does not depend on how happy you are; but on how happy others can be because of you…”
And so what then we need to be and do?
Happiness is not a destination, it’s a journey. Happiness is not tomorrow, it is now. Happiness is not dependency, it is a decision. Happiness is what you are, not what you have.
And if you are happy please pass it on through your generosity. Our world is further sustained by caring, affectionate and generous people. Let us do our part.
(Thanks to the author who created this story & to Fr. Sibi Ofm Cap for sharing this insightful story. And if you know the name of the author, do let us know).