I’ve said this countless times. I’ve said it at other people’s weddings. I’ve said it as I stared at the perfect body of a girl at the gym. I’ve whispered it to my closest friends when someone had something new to show off…
I’d always rather be ME.
Biblically, God promises us that he’ll never give us more burdens that we can actually carry. Ok. I also know through my own study of scripture and various interpretations, that the cross we each carry is apparently just the right size for us. And let’s not forget one of the most common quotes of all time…”the grass is always greener in somebody else’s yard”…
To that, I turn up my nose and say: “I’d still rather be me.”
In the material, earthly realm…I look at it this way. My height is the height I want (though I tell people I wish I was 2 inches taller, but let’s face it, then I wouldn’t be able to wear real heels)…my hair is the way I want it (even though I have spent countless days, months and probably YEARS blowdrying and straightening…I’m still secretly glad it’s curly)…my eyelashes are awesome…my skin tans easily….my parents rock…no seriously, they are incredible, the best parents for ME (a Dad who is sensitive and romantic, he has taught me to value the important things in life, to give of myself to others without expecting anything in return…and he’s also given me the gift of music…and I have a Mom who has sparked my curiosity and cleverness, taught me to budget, prioritize, plan effectively, serve my community, and consistently and efficiently manage my time). My academic success (always, always came easy)…friendships, popularity…I possess the right personality to succeed in a social setting…my smile (it’s a trademark)…my background (my pedigree is pretty damn respectable…regardless of the sour apples that take part in it…)…my car is MY dream car…and regardless of what I’ve ever driven before, I’ve always been proud of it…my talents….wow, I am so grateful to God for giving me unique abilities, that make me seem indispensable, whether I’m serving as a volunteer, being a friend, or sharing a vital experience…I have great nails…I’m intuitive, intelligent, sensitive, emotional (with a well developed ability to “reason”)…I am eloquent, exemplary…I’ve never failed…I’ve never shamed my parents…let them down…hurt someone so profoundly that a “sorry” would not reverse it…I’m creative…aaaaaand, I give great advice. Amazing. Juuuust amazing.
But today I had to stop and think…seriously….what is SOOOOO damn special about any of these things? Is it like, if I stop and analyze them all critically, are any of them THAT special…THAT irreplaceable…THAT astonishing?
And it’s funny. B/c I can think of countless friends who would say, “Gosh, I wish I had her boyfriend!” or “Gosh, I wish I had her body…” When I look at someone with an amazing body, I think…”would I want her mind? her personality? her family? her friends? her experiences?”
Nope. I’d still rather be me. And keep mine.
Don’t I wish that my hair was naturally straight and I could walk out of the shower and let it air dry into absolute beauty?
Don’t I wish that having a great body came easy and was effortless for me as opposed to a lifetime struggle and a DAILY challenge?
Don’t I wish that my career was stable and I knew exactly where I wanted to take it?
Don’t I wish that I’d found love when I was young and had never had my heart broken?
Don’t I wish my Dad could give me a cashed up AmEx and tell me to enjoy life?
Don’t I wish my Mom was concerned with makeup and fashion so I could have caught on to those thing earlier in life?
Don’t I wish that I didn’t take things personally and was able to just live out my life more carelessly, without so much intense emotion from day to day?
Don’t I wish that I wasn’t so damn responsible and could live for today without worrying about tomorrow?
Don’t I wish that I wasn’t so careful so that I could do things without being afraid of getting hurt or failing?
Don’t I wish that I wasn’t so acutely self aware that I could just be myself, alllllllll the time?
Don’t I wish that i possessed that unique sense of elation that solid, comfortable Christians possess without ever doubting my faith or without ever questioning God?
Don’t I wish I had the company of siblings, so that I could rest assured that I would never have to be alone…?
It’s a struggle. A fine line between taking your blessings for granted and wishing you had more, or wishing it all came easier. My struggles and cares and worries…I’ve embraced them. Though they are not the best parts of my life, they have chiseled my character and given me depth.
I thank God for His grace and mercy in bringing me this far…and I wholeheartedly believe (at least my Mom drills this sentiment into my head) that He’s carried me all the way here…and He won’t forsake me…now. Or ever. Do I wish I could take a list of options and pick what I want for myself? YES. Is that possible? Not in the least.
And, so…when the going gets tough…and all I want to do is sit on my bed, in pj’s, eyes brimming with tears, pouring my heart out into my diary…or into a telephone mouthpiece…I realize how so truly blessed I still am. How aware of it I always will be. And how much God loves me, looks out for me, and takes care of me…
And I’m reminded…the one unforgiveable sin, the only unforgiveable sin, the worst sin to commit is: not to believe in Jesus Christ. Interesting, right? Not murder, not envy, not stealing, not adultery…but merely a faltering faith in Jesus Christ.
So when life seems bleak and dreary, and I get to feeling down on myself…I remind myself:
The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. Psalm 28:7
That being said…I will control the things I can: thoughts, hair straightener heat settings, my mouth, my desire to work hard, my diet…as for the rest, I’ll leave up to God…and thank Him…everyday…for making me, ME.