My heart breaks for injustice. But that sounds so kindergarten, so I dare not say it to anyone. Because injustice is everywhere, like asking someone, “do you like breathing?” So how does one narrow it down? How do you figure out what injustice has more weight than the others? Who can really say? I know who, but I dare not say that either. And perhaps that’s where we need to begin. By listening to the voices of hurt people. To the cries of endangered species. To the cries of unborn children. What do they want? Why are they in pain? Can we do anything about it?
That last question there, that one, that I fear the most. What if I am not enough? What if I can’t really make an impact? What if everyone laughs at me? What if no one will support what I’m doing? So many questions. So many uncertainties. But the worst one of all is inaction.
I like to save pretty things, like words written in cute fonts, in case I ever want to use them for a DIY or something. Or bookmarks with butterflies on them. Or ribbon with ballet slippers on them. It’s like I want to make sure I’m surrounded by only the positives in life and cut out anything that doesn’t belong. I wonder if I’ve been doing this all my life? Acting like a horse with blinders. Life is messy. We can’t photoshop our way out of it, but thinking about my favorite things is what gets me through the rough parts.
Someone I know has the motto, Dream Big. (I’m probably violating several writing rules here, but honestly, that’s what I want it to look like. Dream Big. Not dream big. Not “dream big.” Not DREAM BIG. Dream Big.) Knowing her and where she came from, I would say that motto has worked for her and continues to work for her. And she doesn’t even believe in Jesus.
OK, so this may not apply to every atheist or agnostic person, but doesn’t this example show we all have a desire to be a part of something bigger than ourselves? (Excuse the cliché, but I really mean it.) We all want to be a part of a team. Not just any old team though. No, a team that is more of a loving community, happily supportive of each other.
That said, wouldn’t it be cool if we were all a part of the same team? Instead of people tearing each other apart to get ahead like we’re a Darwinian experiment, people building each other up to bring out the best and only the best parts of each other. Wouldn’t it be cool if we lived on a planet where there was no killing, enough resources for all organisms and none domesticated for the pleasure of others. (Yes, I’m talking about zoo animals and pets. They should be free to roam and not looked at every day for a price or abandoned because their owner suddenly changes their mind on keeping them.) I would love to be a part of Team Earth.
Clarity can be so hard to find sometimes. But there are habits you have that are also extremely hard to break. Now I’m not talking about things like drinking and smoking. I like to put those habits into another category on their own and save it for another time. I’m talking about the kinds of habits that make you who you are. Like if you always have to split apart an Oreo cookie and dunk it piece by piece in the milk before you have it or if you always have to walk by your favorite coffee shop on the way home even if you’re not going to get anything just so you can have a whiff again of what you want your home to smell like one day. Things of that nature. These habits that make up who you are, well, you can like them or hate them, but they will always be a part of you because you can’t run away from yourself.
Take a domesticated cat, for example. It may live with humans, but it’s still going to have a natural instinct to hunt, purr, lick itself, climb trees, jump, etc. It’s going to be who it is—a cat. No matter how long it lives with its human owners, it’s never going to be a human because that’s not what it is. So, when you are trying to find clarity, big or small, whether it’s what’s the next movie you should go see to what’s your life’s purpose, listen to those habits you can’t seem to shake to see what they have to say. You just might find yourself.
After I come home from work, my mind is usually a blank slate. It’s the worst time of the day for me to write because all I want to do is dump all the thought garbage out. I remember a Joel Osteen sermon about negative thoughts vs. positive thoughts and how he compared negative thoughts to carrying around trash in your head all day. This analogy always stuck with me and I’m thinking of it now. As a result, I take a long time to come up with a topic, but once I come up with one, the word vomit just starts pouring out.
Sometimes I really do like how things flow in my brain. I can come up with some really weird ideas when I just let loose like I’m Eminem or something. Especially when I’m in the shower. (I don’t know man. What is it about water flowing down your skin that just relaxes you and almost makes you feel like every little thing you have been worrying about is going to go away because you are in the shower?) But other times things that flow in my brain drive me crazy. (Hello, Britney Spears!) When this happens I just need to let them out somewhere safe. The tricky part is figuring out where that safe place is. And this is where pen and paper come in handy.
So it’s a new year again, huh? Have I ever talked about how chick flicks are porn for women? This idea came to me from someone I used to know. He lives in Seattle now, and the story of how I almost became a pastor’s wife is for another time. Anyway, the reason why he would say chick flicks are porn for women is simply because of expectation vs. reality. You know, that video trend on YouTube where people compare, for example, what they expect to happen on a sick day vs. what actually happens on a sick day. Just like porn is an unrealistic expectation of what sex with a woman is really like for men, chick flicks is an unrealistic expectation of what a healthy relationship with a man is really like for women. I think what my Seattle friend was getting at is it is just as unhealthy for women to binge watch chick flicks as it is for men to binge watch porn. Men and women cannot live up to the expectations presented in these videos so it is unhealthy for both genders to keep filling their brains with certain ideal images when these desires will never be fulfilled.
I see his point, but I still think comparing chick flicks to porn is a little extreme. I don’t know why really, I just think this example is a bit too much. Plus I think nowadays you can learn valuable relationship lessons from chick flicks that you may not have been able to before, from the hopeless romantic ones. There are ones that teach you if you like someone, you have to go for it instead of waiting around for them to notice you. Some teach you that being there for someone when they really need you is all a relationship is. Still others teach you taking time to be single can be really good for you instead of relationship hopping.