By Stephanie Sharkey, Glasgow.
What it feels like . . . to have everything.
I have everything.
You may know me and read this heading thinking “what’s she on about, she doesn’t have everything?!”
You may not know me and read this thinking “who is lucky enough to have everything? I want what she has!”
Well, the truth is, i do have everything and I bet you do too.
It is almost Christmas and we watch our TV’s being filled up with brand commercials, our Facebook and Twitter feeds being flooded with yuletide “bargains” and all in all an overwhelming sense of pressure to buy our way through December.
We have watched people fighting over discounted televisions and even stores being shut on account of the violence on Black Friday. It turns out the name “Black Friday” could not have been more fitting. It is a bleak scenario.
Somewhere, somehow, we have forgotten what it feels like to have everything.
We have forgotten that most of us have a roof over our heads, a warm home to return to after work. That’s right – most of us have jobs and if we do suffer from unemployment it is more than likely only a temporary issue. Most of us have families who will carry us through such terrible times, we may struggle but we will get there. If we are sick, we can take time off from our jobs to get better. Wow, doesn’t that sound like a good deal?
Sometimes, I have to tell myself to snap out of it and I feel huge guilt when i catch myself complaining over nothing. It is so easy to forget what we do have in this big old selfie/bling/riches obsessed world. Christmas is a time for giving and it does well in highlighting just how little others do have.
Now you may be thinking “play the other record Sharks, I know all this already” but stick with me here. My uncle once told me that the feeling you get at Christmas is a gift from God, it is called Christmas Spirit and we need to carry it about with us the whole year.
Whether you believe in God or not, I thought this sentiment was pretty nice and pretty accurate. That feeling you get when you want to do something good for someone else or even just look after the one you love – that in it’s truest sense is the spirit of Christmas.
It is a good time to reflect on how lucky we are and even do something nice for someone we don’t know.
When Heather asked me to write a piece for this site I knew exactly what i was going to write about, because I am in the middle of doing a charity campaign with my friend Nicola for impoverished children at Christmas time. We have so far collected many second hand toys, books and children’s items to service the Greater Glasgow area. We are also helping collect food and toiletry parcels for our local food banks.
The need for such items is greater than ever, people are really struggling right now and even those who do seem to have it together rely on being able to turn to the food banks for help.
Whilst it may be nicer to cry in a Bentley as opposed to on a bicycle, it is easy to fall into a commercialist coma and succumb to the hype. It is good to treat yourself, you work hard and deserve it. But . . . and this is a very serious but (more serious than Kim Kardashian’s butt believe it or not) don’t forget what you have and try once in a while to remember this. Put these feelings to good use.
So whilst my reality check has kicked in and I am here, let me just qualify if have this right; most of us have families, jobs and a roof over our heads. If we have our health, we are winning. Families, jobs, homes and health.
You, like me, have everything. The rest is just sprinkles on the ice cream.
If you are able to donate something, every little helps https://www.facebook.com/GreaterMaryhillFoodbank?fref=ts