For someone who enjoys and strives for individuality, I find it so easy to slip into comparison. I wonder all the time how much confidence and self-assuredness I would have if the Internet did not exist. Every day we wake up and log in and see what everyone else is doing, where they are, who they're with, what they bought, how they look - it's too easy! It's all out there. Realizing that your life is not like anyone (or everyone) else's and deciding that's a bad thing seems like the go-to way to kill the joy of life these days. Choosing to live my life on my terms and defining my own successes is my favorite form of freedom. I actually like myself and my life quite a bit when I choose to do this, and I hope to get even better at realizing when I'm slipping and getting back on track faster this year.
Just like comparison is something that I choose to partake in and can make the conscious effort to remove, worrying is a joy zapper for me. The nice thing about 2012 being completely overbooked was, for the most part, I could tell you exactly what was going to happen next. A control freak's dream. I had projects and events coming up each weekend and scratched them off my list, telling myself each time that I was one step closer to a perfect plan I had built for myself to come together in 2013. The awkward part of deciding exactly how your life is going to go, though, is that (as my Sistah used to say when she was a tot) it don't go that way. Almost exactly when was I at the moment to be pulling out my "Lilly's Master Plan for 2013" workbook, the house of cards I built in my mind started falling. What a crazy reminder that I am not God. I hate when that happens.
A few nights ago, I woke up worrying about the future. "If Congress, our jobs, our families, the rotation of the Earth, etc. could just listen to me explain to them what is best for everyone we could all be perfectly fine. WHY is no one listening to me? Don't they realize they are being life RUINERS!" I had the choice between insomnia and prayer, and I really wanted to get some sleep before spin class in the morning, so there was really only one option.
Then I realized what I slap in the face I was giving out to the being whose life I owe. How about, "God, help me realize that you got this. If it's hard I should be growing and if it's easy that means I should be enjoying it." Once I realized that I had the option to worry about this stuff or not, and that giving it to Him meant freedom, my whole face softened up. I rolled over one last time and went to bed. It's funny how I think I am being a good wife and family member by worrying about everything all the time, when really when I let it go I make my family happy simply by being happy myself.
It's almost shameful to me how easy it is to obtain freedom and happiness by just trying to live a faithful and self-secure life. How is it also so easy for me to forget this?
God did not put me on this planet to be a mother by a certain age, to own a certain pair of shoes or to have a certain title at my job. I am here to show His love for the world each day by trying my best to love others as his Son taught us to. Everything else is just added joy to the journey.
Jesus, take the wheel and all that jazz. This year I'm going to live for myself and give my shit to God and take more vacations - from my problems!
|Editor's note: Here at Pancakes and Beet Juice, we strive to end introspective posts with a What About Bob reference. You're welcome.|