In English 11 last October, Mrs. Dani DeJong shared a collection of essays from National Public Radio’s program, “This I Believe.” She then challenged her students to write their own personal credo about a core principle that defines their life. The array of topics, concerns, and passions were as diverse as the students themselves.
The ACS Inside Out blog is excited to present the first in these essays in a series over the next few months.
BY JASMIN BAUMGARTEN, GRADE 11
Yesterday I danced in the rain. Almost forgot how good that can feel. When was the last time you danced in the rain? Or jumped into a puddle? Or just took a long deep breath after it rained?
I lived my whole life naturally enjoying the small things in life. The only reason why small things cause excitement rushing through my veins is because I learned it by doing it. But that means everybody can learn how to find this calm and soothing feeling if we just practice enough. We learn how to value the seemingly unimportant things in our lives.
Puddles and Snow Angels
It may not be easy at first to find beauty in the small things, you may even have to force yourself to do it, but it’ll get easier the next time. And I can assure you, once you felt the happiness small things can give you, you do not want it to stop. But it does stop eventually when we fall back into our everyday life and forget about it. Therefore we need to keep reminding ourselves what significant effect simply jumping into a puddle or making a snow angel in the winter can have on our own mental well-being. Even Mother Teresa said, “Be faithful in small things because it is them that your strength lies.”
I managed to experience joy by just looking at the stars for a few minutes, listening to music on full volume and dancing or singing, going for a walk at night and tasting the air, jumping in the lake with my clothes on, hugging my dog whenever I feel sad, sitting on my windowsill at night, and dancing in the rain.
What I Learned
Embracing the rain instead of getting annoyed by it can save any bad day. I believe your life will be more untroubled when you enjoy small things from time to time.
It is a way of being thankful for what we have daily. But because it’s so normal, we often forget what joy it can actually bring us. Sometimes we need to step out of our comfort zone adapted to the public us and do things most people would say only kids do.
I’m well aware that you probably already heard all of this a thousand times before. But there is a reason why people and famous individuals (like Mother Teresa) say it: because it is true and it actually works.
Towards the Rain
When I decided to dance in the rain yesterday, I decided that the rain is not going to make my day any worse than it already was. I decided to lift my head up and feel the cool raindrops on my face. To taste the sweetness when the raindrops ran down into my mouth. To turn my music up and dance without caring what other people might think and enjoy the happiness of the moment.