I listen to a fair amount of Taylor Swift. Some of it is because I have girl shorties, and some of it is because I like some of her music.
I know. Shoot me now, eh?
But there's this one song, and the premise of it is that the day in question was a total fairytale - everything was awesome. I started thinking about it, and then I heard this really good homily at church today, and it started a chain of thinking in my head.
I know. It's a very bad thing, isn't it?
I've been in some conversations recently and heard, over and over, many people are dissatisfied in their lives, wondering, "Is this it? Is this all that there is? Where are the fireworks, the excitement, the wonder and the joy?"
And those things are there.
At least for me, but they aren't as often as many movies/tv shows/songs make them out to be - and many people think that they should have all of those things all the time, because, after all, those things are the constant topic choices for movies/tv shows/songs. And, we all know, if it's in a movie/tv show/song - it must be true. Many of us are disappointed when we feel as if we are let down by those in our lives, those we depend upon to raise us up. In reality, we are using the wrong measuring stick to measure our lives.
For me, when I feel that way, it's almost certain that my expectations are way out of whack and it's time for me to sit back and have a great reality check. Sometimes life does this for me. It's kind of like I have a weight on me and as soon as I reach a certain height - back down I come.
That's kind of morbid, I think, but it's reality. And above all, I'm a realist. I have days that are great, days that are full of contentment and happiness - but we've been dealing with multiple difficult situations in our family and these thoughts keep going through my head - and hearing some of them in church today really cemented it. Bear with me as I list them here - some of these are things I keep telling my kids over and over and over and - well, I'm sure you know as well.
- Life is hard.
- Life is not fair.
- People screw up.
- People are not what you want them to be.
- Sometimes, the good guy doesn't finish first.
- People don't act the way you think they should, do the things that you want them to, or show you what you would expect them to show you.
- People don't always treat you the way that you feel like you deserve. Maybe it's justified. Maybe it isn't. If you are thinking this, maybe you should do a reality check - and maybe it's time to do that reality check with a friend.
- Envy is the counterpoint of love.You cannot possibly be envious of someone that you profess to love. (This was the crux of today's homily, and it was super powerful to hear.)
- Being part of a bigger group - family, church, synagogue, fraternity/sorority - is an insanely tough amount of work.
- Sometimes, that work just isn't worth it. But if you think it isn't, try going at it alone and see how enjoyable it is.
- You work on being the very best you that you can be. Everything else will get better or worse with absolutely no effort from you. If it gets better, awesome. If it gets worse, then it wasn't meant to be.
And there ends my weekend dose of depressing topic choices.