The Lives of Others

As a recent graduate, the most commonly asked of question is “What are you doing/working as now?”

Fortunately, I’m employed, so the question’s easy to answer.

But for some of my friends, the hunt for a job is still on and this post is for them.

Getting a job after you graduate is a natural step for most. Some do it to pay loans. Others do it to avoid nagging parents. A job could also be a matter of pride, isn’t that what spending four years in university was all for?

For those who quickly find one, especially in these tough economic times, it is a relief and even something to be proud of. But please, spare a thought for those who have not found one.

Some weeks ago, a friend talked about how he dreaded attending an upcoming birthday gathering with his university pals. The thing is, everyone else was already working, but him. So what was probably going to happen was that everyone would be complaining about their new jobs and all he could do is listen.

Plus, it was at an expensive restaurant, and it also involved chipping in money for a gift.

It probably didn’t help that pride got in my friend’s way. As he put it, how do you tell your friends that the money about to be splurged can keep you alive a little longer while you hunt for a job?

The fact that none of his friends blinked when arranging to splurge like that only showed how they couldn’t imagine anyone unable to spend money like. After all, as working adults, is it a crime to splurge and enjoy one’s hard-earned money? Plus, what’s money spent on friends?

It just made me feel lucky to have friends who were sensitive to the lives of others. Most of them struggled through life and never knew the riches they are earning today. It is that experience that keeps them grounded, and they don’t take things for granted. As someone who has led a comfortable life, I don’t dare declare that I am as aware, but thanks to them, I can see better.

And that’s what I hope to share: that let’s be aware of the lives of others, especially those you call your friends.

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