What I Have

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A few months ago, I wrote a post about my need to maintain hope and positivity when things are really bad. But, admittedly, I’m not Polyanna. I sometimes start to lose sight of the pretty rainbows when there are so many dark clouds and storms and tornadoes in front of me.

We’re all feeling a lot of things right now, aren’t we?

If you’re like me, you don’t want to feel hurt and confused and scared.  You’d rather feel angry, because it’s an easier feeling to cope with. A safer feeling. Anger gives us energy, even if it’s the “wrong” kind of energy, while sadness takes the energy away.

If you’re like me, you don’t want to feel hopeless and helpless. It’s scary feeling, isn’t it? You don’t want to feel cynical and pessimistic.  But you also don’t want to feel like everything will be back to normal next week, because how can it be “normal” when everything around us seems to be falling apart?

If you’re like me, you don’t even want to make funny, lighthearted blog posts because it doesn’t seem right to laugh about anything today.

I want to crawl into a cave and make it all go away. I want to watch obnoxiously cheerful television and pretend that it’s reality. I want to avoid social media sites, where half of my friends are denouncing the entire Black Lives Matter movement, because they don’t truly understand its purpose.

I don’t want to feel sad, nor do I want to feel angry.

If you’re like me, you feel tired right now. Maybe numb.

But…I can take a breath, and dig a little deeper.

I can remember that I’m lucky, because I haven’t personally lost a loved one to any acts of violence in the past few months. I can feel sad, but I don’t have the right to feel completely hopeless. I need to remain positive for the people who truly no longer can.

After all, I can’t help change a world that I have no hope for. If I think that my words and actions make no difference, then I’m part of the problem, aren’t I? I need to come out of my cave and into the light. I need to try harder to see the rainbows, even if I need to borrow someone’s binoculars in order to do so.

This is still a good world. This is still a beautiful life. I have a family who loves me, and friends to laugh with. I have music and singing and Youtube videos of puppies. I have a roof over my head. I have a job that I not only enjoy, but draw meaning from, and I have hobbies like crocheting and writing. I have chocolate. I have queso.

What do you have?

 

Quote Challenge – Day One

I was nominated by Mark over at Coloring Outside the Lines to participate in a three-day quote challenge. Thanks, Mark! 🙂

Here are the rules for this challenge:

  • Post one of your favorite quotes(different quote on each day) on three consecutive days. The quote can be from your favorite book, author, or your own.
  • Nominate three bloggers to challenge them.
  • Thank the blogger who nominated you

For the first day of this challenge, I selected a quote by Fred Rogers. Don’t recognize the name? Maybe you’ll recognize his graffiti visage:

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You know you’re a big deal when someone spray paints your face on the side of a wall.

Anyway, Mr. Rogers contributed a lot to the world through his educational children’s TV show Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood, as well as through his snappy dressing. But my favorite quote of his is this:

When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”

As I’ve described in another post, I try to stay positive – not just about my own life, but about the world at large. Some days, I have to try really, really hard. And when a true disaster occurs, I can feel myself taking on a hopeless, pessimistic worldview. But I try to remind myself of this quote, because Fred’s mom (Mrs. Rogers?) was right – amidst chaos and sadness, there are ALWAYS people who are trying to lend a hand in some way.

Some offer a comforting touch, or listening ear, and some offer a different kind of assistance, such as through donating money. And some of us help by rating the quesos at various restaurants so others don’t have to.

Three people I’ve nominated to participate in this challenge:

  1. Midnight Musings with Megs
  2. Hotmess Memoir
  3. A Kinder Way

A Beginner’s Guide to Optimism

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I’m a little disturbed by a trend I keep seeing. It’s mostly evident on social media (god forbid), and in the comments sections of yahoo articles (why do I keep reading those??), but does happen in person as well.

What’s the trend, you ask?

Individuals saying things along the lines of, “there are few good people left in this world.”
Or, “I weep for the future.”
Or, “I’m terrified for where our society is headed.”

If you’re one of these people, what exactly got your panties in such a knot? What made you lose ALL hope for the future? I ask this because the majority of people I know who have experienced all the hurts and horrors life has to offer, still see the good. These are people who have witnessed enough pain to make the rest of us think it’d be understandable if they hated the world – and they still don’t. They see strengths in themselves, and in their loved ones, and they would give you the coats off their backs if they saw you shivering.

No, the people who fear the “inevitable” destruction of our society, and the annihilation of our morals, did not get that way by experiencing one too many negative life experiences.

Perhaps these people have jobs and lifestyles that don’t provide a lot of positive social interaction, so they miss out on the good, decent people who are all around us. Some of these lovelies are doing HUGE good things – advocating for human rights, conducting research to cure cancer and AIDS, and ensuring that families around the globe have access to clean water.

Some are doing smaller, behind-the-scenes good things that the world at large may never know about, but that still contribute to the betterment of our planet – becoming licensed foster parents, knitting blankets for animals in shelters, and writing blog posts about cheese  volunteering their time in some capacity.

Surely any naysaying doomsdayers reading this can think of recent times when others were good to you? Maybe your coworker left you a sweet note when you were having a rough day? Maybe a taller person helped you reach something you couldn’t get to in the grocery store? Maybe your roommate let you have the last slice of pizza?

I hope you Cranky McCrankypants can think of something, because the only thing that terrifies me about current society is the idea of living around people who all think our world is wretched and doomed.

And no, remembering that there’s good around us doesn’t make us “Polyanna.” It doesn’t make us naïve. If anything, it makes us human.

Okay, I’m done.

Rather than apologizing for getting a little rant-y, I’ll instead say a “thank you” for reading this to the end. Like a lot of other bloggers, I usually prefer to keep my writing light-hearted and humorous – mainly because it’s more fun for me 😉 But when something a bit more serious is poking at your brain, dying to be written about, sometimes you just have to give in.

A little bit of loveliness to make you feel better about the world