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Letter: Sandy Reflections

I was just reflecting over the last week. I’m the type of person that is not at all comfortable in the dark and quiet from losing power. I did manage to get a hold of a CD player and decided I was in the mood for a little Phil Collins. The song, “Another Day in Paradise” came on and I really got caught up in it. I played it about four times. And although I have heard it many times before, I looked at it a little differently this time.

Yes, Phil Collins talks about homeless people and how others that see them feel uncomfortable and because of that, refuse to help or really see their plight. I thought to myself, “Okay, here I am sitting with candles on, feeling very cold because there is no heat, and once the sun is down, there is not all that much you can do.” I am layered in clothes trying to keep warm. I wasn’t able to cook cause the stove is electric. And the worst part was feeling so anxious within myself. But the funny thing was the more I listened to the song the more I realized that even though I was in a very difficult and uncomfortable position I still had a lot to be grateful for. I may have had no heat, but I had clothes to layer and although at times it was warmer outside than it was inside, at least I could come inside out of the winds as I have a roof over my head and a bed to try to keep warm in.

I couldn’t cook but I had two neighbors to go to if I needed to boil water. One neighbor gave us dinner a few times. I had my animals with me and although I thought I might lose the lizard (yes, people can become attached to lizards), I made makeshift things to try and give her at least some of the heat she needed, I had my dogs to snuggle up with and their warm kisses from them when the anxiety had me thinking I couldn’t go through another day like this. I made coffee over a candle. My message is that no matter how bad the situation is you can always find something to be grateful for in that situation. And gratitude is something we should never forget about. Gratitude keeps us grounded, keeps us looking for ways to make things better (even if the situation isn’t our doing). It lets us see and be thankful for people who lend a helping hand, but most of all gratitude reminds us that there is a God, a Creator, someone much higher than us that we need to have faith in.

Mariah Leal
Glen Cove Resident