There are certain advantages of having no one to answer to.
The problem is I live with myself, and I have to live with my decision-making or not making.
Those same advantages have become the ones I fight through every day.
I don’t believe my choices are that different from anyone else’s,
Regular day-to-day stuff makes us all weary; especially in the midst of the wintery-est winter we’ve all see in quite some time.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who wants to do something else besides vacuum, or laundry.
Curl up on the couch with cocoa, or work out and a water-flush? So far, working out is winning. Mostly, because I have obligations of my own doing to fulfill, and I sincerely do not want to be embarrassed by all of those times that reading won over the past few years.
Chores, creating or e-laxing? So far, chores lose most of the time. Visitors are infrequent, and I’m pretty good at all of those little 5-minute day-to-day maintenance steps, so things rarely get out of hand. Other times, I push through the cleaning in order to get to what I really want to do. Relax online. I even coined a word for it: e-laxing. Then there’s cooking. I have to eat. It’s a fifty-fifty most days. I cook on the weekends, and that makes the first part of the week easier. Cook for four; keep out two, freeze two. By the time Thursday comes around, I am usually out of fresh produce. Last week it was still light out at 5:30 pm, which not only heralds being able to get to the market after work, but also the start of possible social re-emergence.
What’s missing from my realm of choice is non-choice. To some extent everyone had a choice about everything, but those with spouses or children or parents who need help have an extra added layer of obligation, demoting regular, optional functions to rote ones. “Stuff has to get done,” I remind myself, often referring to a non-verbatim, often adapted, politically-corrected poem excerpt from Within My Power by Boy Scout Executive Forrest Witcraft: “A hundred years from now it will not matter what my bank account was, the sort of house I lived in, or the kind of car I drove…but the world may be different because I was important in the life of a child.”
I don’t care what sort of house or apartment I live in, as long as I can afford it, and it is comfortable to me. I don’t care what sort of car I drive, as long as I can afford it, and it is reliable, and comfortable to me. I don’t care about designer clothes, the “in” shoes, or status jewelry. Unless they can be found at Kohl’s on the clearance rack, I have a 30% off coupon, and perhaps some Kohl’s cash, as well. Then, I do care, only if they are made well, fit well, and are quality items, though.
Despite all the things I do not chase, there are ones I do, not because I believe I am supposed to, but because I cannot get away from them. I do care what my bank account looks like. I like electricity and natural gas and the luxury of a roof over my head affords. I do hope to save enough money to fully retire. I care what my bank account looks like so I can help, when I am inspired to. I have favorite programs I contribute to; favorite people I like to gift. What makes me happy is making other people happy. Lately, making others happy has been coming at too great an emotional cost. No one puts money in a bank expecting to never get it back, which, of course is the root of my latest problem. I’ve been simultaneously self-serving and trying to lead by example, expecting a full-fledged buy-in of reciprocity.
When that failed, I chose with-holding: restraint. It’s been a difficult exercise; a struggle to not do what makes me happy. Withdraw and uncomplicated simplicity is not always the best route. Like going off-road in a low-slung vehicle, underlying damage changes the performance. I could jack it up with off-road tires and lifts, but I’d rather head back to the path I’d been on. Unfortunately, there are no earthly do-overs. Even if I turn right around, drive directly back to where I went astray, and fling open welcoming passenger doors, I don’t know if any of my previous riders would be willing to re-ride along.
The assumption that giving in any form is an investment is driver error. To our advantage, GOD’s vehicle does not support that version of the program.
We are not saved by a tally of acts. We are saved by the acceptance of grace, and the ever-present advantage bestowed upon us:
Gracefully moving toward accepting who we are.
Quote for the week:
I should have no objection to go over the same life from its beginning to the end: requesting only the advantage authors have, of correcting in a second edition the faults of the first. ~ Benjamin Franklin
Enjoy this week’s discovery links:
Within My Power, Forrest Witcraft: http://teachers-and-parents.blogspot.com/2008/02/within-my-power-by-dr-forest-e-witcraft.html
Top 10 Best Benjamin Frankling Quotes . http://www.top10-best.com/b/top_10_best_benjamin_franklin_quotes.html