I don’t hear much about it…
What I hear a lot of, in all sorts of places from the news media to Tragic Novels, are people saying “O Woe, all this stuff wasn’t my fault, I’m being picked on! I’m just a norm person a innocent person and everyone’s picking on me O Woe!”
But y’know what? In my experience most (not all, but most) of the bad things that happen to most (not all, there are folks out there with incredible bad luck) people are the result of hasty decisions, or bad ones, or thoughtlessness or even pure-T active meanness (selfishness, whatever you want to call it). We make our own lives,for the most part.
I feel like I need to put in all those qualifiers because if I don’t someone is going to comment and tell me all about their cousin who doesn’t have a mean bone in their body and only wants joy and sunshine for everyone and yet life still dumps a massive load on her head every time she takes a step. I know there are people who can’t get a break. I know that. I am not one of those people.
But the fact is, for the most part, we form our own destiny with the decisions we make.
We also affect the lives of others with those decisions. That doesn’t mean we must spend hours evaluating every single thing we do before doing it…wouldn’t that be hard on the economy!
I remember…I think I was reading it or maybe someone said this to me…I don’t remember that but I do remember what she said . She said she prayed before every. single. decision. She prayed that God would lead her to the right toilet paper in the store, and that He would show her where to park her car so that He would be honored. As a Christian, I get understand what she was doing. Really, and I kind of respect it but…
I also think God gave us brains so we could make these decisions rationally and on our own. Ok, it’s like this. We are His children. All of us, even the ones who don’t think they are. Do you have children? Do you want your children to rely on you for Every Single Thing? It’s one thing for your 2 year old to ask to go potty,and need your help. You are delighted he asked and happy to help. What about your (normal, non handicapped) 13 year old? What if he asked to go potty and needed your help? What if I called my father (I am 47, he is 74) and asked him which stamp I should use on the envelope I’m mailing the water bill in? God gave us brains to use…
But…sometimes I don’t use them. Sometimes I really SHOULD ask Him before I go off and say or do something, and when I should, but don’t…Things Happen. People get hurt, and guess what…
IT IS MY FAULT. Because I am not perfect. There. I admitted it. ( and didn’t even die, not for a tiny bit, even)
As a human bean, I don’t like to admit to making mistakes or doing something wrong. It is embarrassing and sometimes painful. I was raised in a family that finds tremendous shame in being wrong. We have a hard time admitting it, and I grew up being pretty sure that if someone was angry with me, it would result in absolute rejection. Anger=Hate. When someone in my family was angry with someone, maybe a coworker or a fellow church member, that person was rejected and branded as being WRONG and nothing could fix that. We changed churches a lot when I was growing up. I have no real training in fixing things like a broken relationship, because I believed that if someone was angry with me, they would reject me entirely.
Then I married someone with an entirely different method of dealing with people he is angry with. He yells at them. He waves his arms around and pounds the table. Then he says “now that THAT is clarified, let’s go eat some curry.” He was raised with a noisy family that holds no grudges. It, frankly, scared the hell out of me.
Now, back to me being wrong. I did some stupid things that resulted in someone I love very much being hurt. This person knows of my fear of rejection and kept the hurt inside, not letting me know of it. And,like anything kept inside, it festered, which made it hurt even more.
Then, all that came up and out and resulted in reciprocal hurts and back and forth like tennis with a hand grenade…only…to my surprise…no one died. In fact, getting it all out and realizing the hurt I caused and being able to apologize, and ask for forgiveness was…actually, pretty cathartic, I hope for both of us. I can’t really speak for the other person, except to say I *think* (hopefully) things are better. For me, knowing what caused the problems, EVEN THOUGH THE CAUSE WAS INDEED ALL MY FAULT is a big step in making it right.
My point is that often we are the cause of our own problems. Sometimes, yes,Life craps on our heads. Sometimes, though, we poop ourselves, then try to blame circumstances outside of our control, when reality is that they are entirely within our control, we were just too blind to see it. It is terribly frightening when the eyes do open and recognize what’s going on, and the fear of the world seeing what we see and rejecting us as Awful is very real.
However, I think (hope…) that what really happens is that the world sees us and thinks “Oh, I’m NOT the only one who craps herself!” and actually might feel a little better for it, not feeling so alone in it all, perhaps. I know that’s how I feel, when I see someone make a monstrous mistake. Especially if it’s someone I know and love. I don’t hate them, reject them, or whatever. Yes, I might feel angry for a bit, but mainly I feel empathy, because I know how it hurts.