Life is Good!

Biking in Calgary, Canada

Biking in Calgary, Canada

I have been back in my home country of Canada for about four months, now I have two more weeks to go before I leave again. It has been great to be back home, but I think I enjoyed it more because I know it is not permanent. My wife and I have not made any roots and have not anchored ourselves to a lifestyle we don’t want. The greatest insight I have discovered is that life is fantastic.

Sometimes it is easy to forget just how good we have it. Several friends and relatives have recently undergone major medical surgeries. I have heard many complaints about how far they had to drive to get to the hospital, how long the waiting lists were to get a hospital bed, how many times their surgeries had been postponed, how late the doctor was, etc.

I understand people under-going life threatening operations are under huge amounts of stress and want to get out the hospital as soon as possible, however I think they may be over-looking how lucky they are to be in a rich developed country with amazing technological advances and medical knowledge. Canadians in particular should be ecstatic to have universal and affordable health care. In the cases of my family and friends, the patients went home after only a few days in the hospital.

Consider how amazing this is for a moment. People I know, probably you too, have gone into a hospital and had their bodies cut open. Some have had cancerous tumors cut of of their bodies, others have had hip and knee replacements. Think about how advanced a civilization has to be to cut into human tissue and fix what is wrong. Imagine how you would go about doing brain surgery on a loved one. Think about shaving a head, cutting into the scalp and sawing the skull to get access to the brain. Imagine the sound of sawing a skull. I personally don’t want to be doing any brain surgeries anytime soon, although I am pretty damn thankful that there are doctors out there with the skills and knowledge to help people now.

My wife and I are healthy and are able to live the life we choose. Nothing else is lacking from our lives. Sure lots of money, fame and things would be nice but they certainly aren’t necessary for a happy life.

When traffic is slow, think about how lucky you are to have a car. When you hate your job, think how easy it is compared to what your grandparents endured. When your body aches, remember that it is a sign that you are still alive and are fortunate enough to experience these great times. Life is good and we truly do live in amazing times.

Here is a great related video that has made its rounds but is worth watching again. It is Louis C.K. on Conan O’brien.

Louis C.K. talks on Conan O’brien about technology from Nathan Lunde-Berry on Vimeo.

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My name is John Bardos. My wife and I gave up our business, house and possessions in Japan to search for more meaning and fulfillment in our lives. We've discovered that a satisfying life is about rich experiences, quality relationships and meaningful contribution, NOT consumption.

13 Responses to Life is Good!

  1. Nate says:

    You have a great attitude about and outlook on life. Even in frustrating situations there is still a lot to be thankful for. Great post, although I didn’t particularly enjoy imagining the sound of a skull being sawed open 🙂

    • John says:

      Hi Nate,

      Thanks for visiting.

      I feel down and negative at times but things can always be much worse. No matter how bad life seems, there is definitely someone suffering much harsher conditions and they are problem happier about it as well.

  2. Earl says:

    Thanks for this bright and positive post John. I just need to remind myself to take this sort of view more often!

    And I’m looking forward to the next stage of your adventure…I’ll be heading off again soon as well, so perhaps we’ll get to meet up somewhere at some point.
    .-= Earl´s last blog ..Thank You Scented Candles- =-.

  3. Dave and Deb says:

    Beautiful post. You are right, life is good and we are very lucky as Canadians. We feel the same way as you. It is wonderful to be home for a couple of months, but it is even better to know that we don’t have any roots and will be taking off and exploring the world again too.
    I am glad to hear that your family and friends are doing well.
    .-= Dave and Deb´s last blog ..Osprey takes flight in Capilano- BC Canada- Snapshot Sunday =-.

  4. brian says:

    Your post is so true, considering that most of the things we are worried about are materialistic.

    The proper perspective is really needed sometimes to see what is really important. Some would call you and wife wealthy because you have your health and can be anywhere in the world at this moment. In other words, your FREEDOM of your time is your wealth.
    .-= brian´s last blog ..Best Travel Deals and News – July 6- 2010 – US Passport Fees Rise- Google Travel Domination- Full Body Scanners- Travel Around New Zealand =-.

    • John says:

      Hi Brian,

      Long time no talk!

      That is a good perspective, health + freedom = wealth. Now if only we could add truckloads of money to that equation. 🙂

      We do feel damn lucky these days. No, complaints from us.

  5. Andy Hayes says:

    Hi John,

    Long time no talk 🙂 I’m so glad to hear everything is going well. I think you are right – most people have no idea how blessed they are. If you’re reading this, then you probably have clean drinking water so….
    🙂

    I’m in Canada right now too – visiting Ottawa, Montreal, and Halifax/Nova Scotia. Will pass by your way sometime.
    .-= Andy Hayes´s last blog ..Six of the Best Overland Travel Experiences =-.

  6. Thanks for the video link – I hadn’t seen that one. It’s true we live in an amazing age and yet we tend to be so impatient and unsatisfied. I am totally guilty of complaining if the internet doesn’t work for a few minutes. It’s great that you’ve stepped back and realized how lucky you are. Good health is the most important thing – if you don’t have that nothing can compensate for it.

  7. Anil says:

    Glad to hear things are going well John 🙂

  8. Steve Thomas says:

    Right you are, John! Gratitude is a very important thing! Without it we become whining children, whining about nothing. It is important to remember how good you have it. in this exact moment, you have everything you need.

    I also like what you said about medical care. People in this country, the US, are so afraid of universal health care. They are afraid they might have to give something up. The thing is, there are waiting lists and all the things you mentioned here too! My son, who used to work in a Doctor’s office, had to fight with insurance companies daily to get procedures covered. Universal health is the only way to go!
    .-= Steve Thomas´s last blog ..Macbook Pro Fulfilling My Lifestyle Design =-.

    • John says:

      Thanks for the comment Steve. It is great to hear from new people.

      It is too bad that a basic right like medical care seems so difficult to get in the US. I really don’t understand how a country like America can not have universal health care.

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