Being isn’t easy. I don’t know why the hell as children we want to grow up so fast. I don’t even think being a child is easy really. I have three children of varying ages and the more I watch them grow the more I think, “shit…sometimes they have it really sucky.” Let’s deviate for just a moment to allow me to explain.
My 7 year old…
Not even two full weeks into the new school year she comes to me one early school morning with tears in her eyes. Now I’m wondering automatically ‘what hurts’ and I wait for her to tell me what has prompted her crying. “I can’t find my school agenda.” Now honestly, if it were you or me, I doubt we would really cry over a misplaced agenda (though there are some of you who would possibly attempt to slit your wrists if you lost yours but for the most part…I think we would survive, continue looking, and probably find it between the seats in the car, or under the bed, or somewhere.) But here she is really struggling to contain her ever-present fears of a lost agenda. This is REAL stress guys! I basically have to put on my negotiator jacket and convince her to walk away from the figurative edge of the building and ‘save her’ from the depths of whatever sadness lurking inside her. Over a damn agenda!
My 10 year old…
Bullying is a very real problem in our school systems and my son has had to combat some very mean, nasty kids. Maybe it is a rite of passage…because I recall my own experience with certain bullies when I was a kid. Having said that, today is way different than it was 25 years ago and I can honestly say without a shed of doubt that the bullies today are more stressed and wound up than they were back in the day and because of that…they are top-notch bullies. Five stars. Gold medalists in their field, if you will. My son continued in this negative environment for three years because I was led to believe he would come out of it bigger, better, and stronger. However in the brief moment I witnessed my son crying…really breaking down over the depths of darkness inside him, I finally was forced to come to terms with just how miserable he was. This is REAL stress guys! That was the end of that school environment for my kids and I am happy to say they are in a way better place and I only wish I had listened to my kids over the ‘professionals’ long before I had.
My 13 year old…
Growing into her self-identity is terrifying, confusing, and all-consuming for this age. Shit, look at Miley Cyrus and her attempt at self-identity quest. It’s landed her on national stage, tongue hanging out, half naked, and patrolling around like a…(fill-in-the-blank). You think that is all her? She’s got her publicists, her wardrobe team, her stylists, her followers, her paparazzi, and please don’t you dare forget about her emotional and mental side…I’m sure she’s got a few hundred voices inside her leading and guiding her in all sorts of directions.
Anyway, my daughter is creative, spontaneous, and a social guru. She is just like the others her age…diving into all forms of self-expression: music, friends, quirky habits and behaviors, ect. And yet every constant moment she is trying to balance that fine line of becoming the woman she wants to be and staying true to the person her parents see her as. She tries so hard to ‘follow the rules’ and hold to the expectations placed upon her. This is REAL stress guys! For example, her dad is very adamant about ‘NO BOYS!” Don’t think about them, don’t talk to them, don’t look at them, don’t date them…until you are fourty! LOL-Seriously…. And of course, her two best friends are boys. (DUH!) It may seem like nothing really to you, the adult, but to her…it is very hard…living two lives and trying to merge the expectations of her parents as well as the desires to be who she is.
Back to the topic at hand…the crap storms we stir up.
Being isn’t easy. Have you looked at your life recently? How many masks do you put on and take off every single day? How many lies have you told others today? How many lies have you told yourself today? And for all this…we stir up the crap storms in our lives. We are the ultimate cause of our own destruction, self-defeat, and unhappiness.
Because we let others have the control. We let someone else’s words cause us to feel anger or sadness. Have you been bullied? What was that racial or bias slur thrown at you the other day? Did it hurt your feelings? DUH-sure it did. But you were the one that allowed yourself to dwell on it…and how long did you dwell…hours, weeks, years? We have witnessed events in which those minds have dwelt so long on it that they go into their schools and murder countless innocents.
Being isn’t easy. I don’t know why people think life is supposed to be fair or just. Who the hell ever said it would. But why do we create more crap storms. Why stir up even more hardships for ourselves by wearing masks, hiding who we are, and sacrificing our own happiness. Why not set obtainable goals for ourselves and strive to be happy.
I’m not saying you can get whatever you want. Hell, we all know that isn’t true. “You can be anything you want to be” isn’t exactly true and I don’t know why we tell our kids that when they are growing up. I tell my kids…if you want something and you are willing to fight like hell to get it…you’ll find peace along the journey as long as you stay true to yourself. Don’t run people over, don’t steal, and don’t lie to get there because then it’s not fighting like a winner…but cheating like a loser. And in the end…how great will you feel having done that?
Don’t wallow in self-pity because you don’t have something, because you don’t fit in, because you can’t have something. Change things up…set different goals…do something different because obviously whatever you were doing…isn’t working. Don’t stir up the crap storms in your life…I promise life will throw some pretty good ones your way without your help. So I say we start claiming the lives we want for ourselves. I say we start being true to ourselves. I say we quit giving over control and power and instead take it in our hands…roll it up into a tight ball and aim for the bullseye…and shoot. Even if you don’t make it, at least you can say you gave it your very best.