I started complaining about any and everything to any and everyone who was within earshot. And, when I was by myself, that didn't stop me. I complained to myself! Why why why? I whined. Why do I have to work so many jobs to make ends meet? Why have I not lost more weight after an entire summer of strenuous workouts? Why am I not further on this chapter of my dissertation? Why do I have to pay tuition even though I'm done with coursework? Why is our house such a mess? Why did my professor let me down and forget the details we've discussed four times in twelve weeks? How could she? How could I? How could they? Why me?
...when I had quieted my mind long enough to hear myself and register the words I was saying...
I felt so ashamed and unworthy of the blessings in my life.
- I was complaining about having too many jobs while millions of people have none.
- I was complaining about my weight while millions have no food to sustain their bodies.
- I was complaining about working out all summer and seeing minimal results while millions are sick, handicapped, arthritic, or unable to move their limbs freely.
- I was complaining about my dissertation while millions go uneducated and cannot read or write, much less engage in the privilege of scholarly research.
- I was complaining about housework and clutter while millions are homeless.
Quite simply, I had made myself mentally sick. And, quite honestly, I was disappointed in my words, actions, and mindset. Once the scales fell from my eyes, I sat down and--instead of complaining--I gave myself a stern reprimand.
I have a roof over my head, food in my stomach, clothes on my back, books on my shelves (and, yes, my floors), a candidacy in doctoral studies, and an excess of employment for the number of available hours in each day.
So, I propose a movement away from this narcissistic feeling of entitlement. Out with sickness, out with disappointment, out with inadequacy. In with action. In with energy. In with beauty.