A year on from Tanzania

I tried my hardest to hold back the vomit which threatened to come gushing out of mouth alongside my heavy sobs. An array of emotions overpowered me. Confused, sad and most of all angry.

Why is our world like this? Why do I have so much yet they have little?

How can we fix it? What could I do to help?

The truth is, when we look at problems on such a large scale, we become lost in them and so frightened because it is beyond our capacity to fix them.

We can never solve all the world’s problems. There will always be something far from reach of our control. But we can make a difference. Each and every one of us has the power within us to change the world, in the easiest way possible.

I will never be able to change the fact that I was born in England, a land of plenty, whilst those who haunt us were born in different parts of the world, like Africa, a land of so little. I can’t and never will be able to understand it.

I’ve shed a million tears and have spent hours on trying to find the answers to these questions but all I can do is choose to be better. To love my life fully and to be so grateful.

Travelling changes you. It causes you to look deep within your soul. It makes you question every single thing you’ve ever known and believed in.

I’m taking with me the lessons from the dusty village back roads of Kenya to the chaotic street stalls of Marrakesh, and the impenetrable forests and scenery of Tanzania I shared many beautiful moments with those who were so less fortunate than me.

Yet were they?

Because despite there lack they were always so kind an happy. They had so little but still would share with me their small and hard earned meals, shove friends out the way so I could be more comfortable on difficult journeys on the backs of pick-ups, and adopt me as their child when I was sick, healing me with their hospitality and home remedies.

My skin, my backpack, my ability to roam freely told them who I was. But they didn’t care. Nothing which made me so different from them affected the love exchanged.

Their eyes never held bitterness. They never spoke to me of jealousy or hatred. They didn’t steal from me, they never hurt me.

kindness, love and so much laughter, with no days of.

Their eyes showed me how lucky I was. Their smiles told me to be grateful. Their gentle touch asked me to spend every day making the most of my life. For them.

Without a thought, they would without a doubt do anything to trade places with me, though they still wished the up most best for me.

Gratitude and living your best life I sometimes forget and end up spending endless amounts of time complaining and moaning. Sometimes it takes days, months, even years before the ghosts reappear.

I still hear the jingle of a small coin bag of a young girl begging to me, with dark pleading eyes.

I hear the jingle of the coin bag and see the dark pleading eyes of a young girl speaking to me.

“I’d do anything to have your life for a second. Anything. You are lucky only because of the nature of your birth.
If I were you I would be kissing the ground in gratitude and embracing every single second of that life that most of us can only ever dream about. Be grateful. This is the best way you can honour us.”

My ghosts help me to remember that I have two arms and two legs and fresh drinking water. My problems are so bloody small and manageable. I have no right to complain.

So I choose to spend every moment living life the best I can for them. I know how badly they want it so how dare I abuse that privilege?

I choose to work for a better world for them every day by being a better world.

My ghosts also help me in those moments when I see those who have more than me.. My thoughts turn to jealousy, insecurity and self-pity.
Once again I see the smiles, the kind eyes wishing the best for me always and the green envy quickly evaporates.

Don’t take it for granted, don’t whinge and complain, don’t be ungrateful because that is disrespecting those who would do anything to have what you have.

Sometimes I feel like my worst own emery because I am guilty of not doing this. We all have our dark days but I do my best to honour the ghosts. Those who struggle around the world would change places instantly. Some would give you all their poverty, hunger, thirst and their pain just so they could have your life.

So in honour of them, it is important that you make the most of your life, that for whatever reason you have been so graciously given. This is one small, yet powerful and positive way we can give back and spread healing energy to our world.

We MUST do this without being plagued by feelings of guilt. We CAN do this without being plagued but feelings of guilt. We can life our most beautiful life and reach out a hand to help others at the same time. Once we do this we are in a more powerful position to create solutions to our global problems.

So I will take my memories of poverty I have seen and the pain of those in the world and try to turn it into a positive.

To be more grateful? To choose happiness? To practice peace? To reach out a hand of compassion to all people? To donate and not fight against, but work towards? To spread the message? To be the voice? To make a difference?

Be all of these things. Let others know they can be too. Otherwise the ghosts will haunt you even more than before.

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