Coming Home & Gratitude

Apparently I am still not all the way home. Last night I actually thought that a monkey had jumped up on my bed and was super relieved when I realized it was just the dog. Still, it’s so good to be here. Full of gratitude for all of the little things I often take for granted. Clean air and water and steaming hot showers. Warm welcoming hugs and endless stories from my unusually chatty teenagers. Almond milk lattes, ripe avocados, and genuine freedom. 

I find myself remembering a particularly poignant moment of the trip when our group had just sat down for lunch in our hotel restaurant in Haridwar. It wasn’t an unusually extravagant meal but after spending the morning wandering the dirty, crowded streets and seeing so many people getting by on so very little, it felt utterly lavish. As the waiter set another beautiful tray of thali on the table, I heard the woman across the table from me draw in a giant breath. After a long pause, she slowly whispered. “We are so rich.” Her voice was thick with feeling. The simple truth of her words pierced my heart and instantly brought tears to my eyes.  

We are. So rich. 

And yet often it’s those of us who have the most, who appreciate what we have the least. Caught in the illusion that more is better, we live in persistent discontent. 

This is one of the most stunning differences I see in India. Where so many live each day, content with their circumstances and acceptance of the life they were born into. 

As I return home to my relatively abundant life, I am more committed than ever to remembering how outrageously blessed I am. With hopes that those of us who live with privilege of any kind remember to take a stand for those who don’t and together we find balance and peace and more than enough for all.

Kirsten Warner