It's so hard to get out of my warm, dreamy sleigh bed in the morning, especially this time of year. I rush around getting the kids dressed & out the door, off to a public school where they receive a quality education, and I am allowed to question things if I choose about what they are taught there. I complain that I never have any clothes to choose from for work, (understatement of the century) that my high heels hurt my feet, and I'd rather just wear my Justin Boots to work every day with some worn in jeans. I complain about the price of gas, even though I have a company gas card. I gripe about having to work, about having to boss so many people around, make decisions for them, audit them and point out their shortcomings. I get aggravated because I don't think my office is insulated enough, therefore it stays too cold in there. I get frustrated when people discuss other people's private business at work. I get angry when the weak are singled out by the bullies.
I complain about the light bill, I fuss about the cable bill, I whine about the price of groceries and I think to myself I'd rather scrub out the back of a garbage truck than set foot in wal*mart. I am never so tired as when I begin to cook dinner every night. There are a thousand things I could be doing in lieu of cooking. Expense reports, playing a computer game, getting on facebook, calling Julie or Michele', playing wii with the kids, checking homework, reading one of the dozen books I'm halfway through but can't ever finish. I gripe that the kids don't bring their dirty clothes to the hamper in the laundry room. I resent the dishwasher because it uses so much hot water and electricity, plus it has to be loaded and unloaded. I hate writing the check to the insurance company and the land tax man, because it seems like such a rip off. I hate paying the water bill. I can think of so many things I want my kids to have, that I want to have, that I would so rather spend my hard earned money on than the stupid water bill.
I get angry when the neighbors dog gets into my garbage. I get upset when I watch the morning news every day at 6am. I dwell on the negative, and that bit of bad news, that feeling that some poor kid was attacked by a pit bull, some slum lord has human beings living in squalor, that the murder toll in Jackson has risen another notch. I carry that taste in my mouth all day. The hopelessness, the despair, the frustration one feels when you realize what exactly it is you feel: When you discover that too much is just that, too much.
I realize now I've been looking at it from entirely the wrong perspective.
I HAVE a warm cozy bed to sleep in. I have a nice roof over mine and my families head. I have money to buy groceries, I have a car I can drive to wal*mart. I have a job that this economy has not taken away from me. I make the decision what I want to wear to work, how I want my hair styled, what jewelry goes best with what outfit. My kids have the same decisions when it comes to their lives. What will they wear? How will they behave? Will they apply themselves and study and behave in class? How will they treat their fellow students?
I cherish the ritual of sit down family dinners, why should I resent the fact that I have to cook them? The end benefit heavily outweighs the input. I get to have a quiet, family conversation and find out what's going on in every ones lives. I should rejoice that I have lights and electricity, central heat and air conditioning. I should thank God every time clean water runs out of my tap, enabling me to take a long hot bath to recoup from the stress of a work day.
I should be glad I live in a small community where the dogs do run free, where we all know one anothers names & histories, and we know there are no problems we can't work through. I shouldn't get so depressed by the news. I can't change the entire world in one day. I can only be who and what I was meant to be, and if I change the outlook of one person per day, and point out we should all have more gratitude and thankfulness, and stop blaming everyone else for our problems, then I have done a little good. I would rather share my positivity with one single individual than spread false hope like it's a new dope to the masses.
Do you see what this all relates to? Freedom. I don't have to worry about being killed because I'm not dressed correctly. I can pray anywhere, anytime I want. I can read my bible, I can preach the gospel, I can praise God whenever it strikes me. And I should. We should relish our opportunities, and cease being beholden to the rhetoric of politicians and more so the influence of our 'friends.' I can watch TV because it's not censored, I can take a job in a mans vocation if I so choose, I don't have to ask my families permission whom and when I marry. I can get whatever level of education I choose, I can have as many children as I want. I can have friends and family no matter what their race, religion, creed, sex, or sexual orientation. I can do exactly what i want, because the price of religious freedom and national freedom has been paid for me.
What a beautiful gift it is, Freedom. That word is so powerful, in and of itself. Stop for a second and think about what it means to you.
Use thy freedom wisely.