My coffee is cold. My coffee spilled. I can’t find my favorite shoes. I’m tired. I don’t want to get out of bed. The cat barfed on my shoe. The water in the shower was too cold. I’m tired of eating this cereal.
How many times do you complain before you’re even out the door in the morning?
For me, if I’m being honest… it’s a heck of a lot.
Our lives become constant races toward unforeseeable finish lines. We get swamped by day to day life, by the push and pull of our desires with social expectations. We become walking balls of stress, trying to figure out how to manage life… and usually failing at finding all the answers.
I think it is my penchant for complaining that has drawn me to Martin Pistorius’s story, in an odd way. Because when I hear this man’s story, when I see what he endured and the fact he is still able to smile, I remember that my complaints are literally nothing.
Nothing at all.
Martin Pistorius fell into what the doctors called a vegetative state after a fluke illness at the age of twelve. He could no longer talk, walk, or even move. His parents believed he was completely gone.
But he wasn’t. For twelve years, he was literally trapped in his body, mentally functioning but physically unable to communicate this.
In his own words, he was left to the mercy of everyone to make every single choice for him.
Thanks to a nurse, those around him eventually realized the unthinkable—Martin had been trapped in his body for over a decade. Today, he is married and has a web design company. Today, he shares his story—and he does it without anger or pity for himself.
This is what truly amazes me about this man.
Martin Pistorius reminds us that we take so much for granted. My coffee might be cold… but at least I can make the decision to drink it or not. I can walk to the microwave and heat it up or make a new cup. I might be tired, but at least I can get out of bed and go to my job. In the first five minutes of my day, I have more freedom and blessings than some have in years.
Martin Pistorius has reminded me to be thankful for what I have and to be grateful for every breath, for every word, for every step I take.
Having a bad day? Feel like life is too tough? Check out Martin’s TED talk. Trust me, it will motivate you, inspire you, and make you feel unstoppable.
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