Let me just warn you all right now. The tally on this tangent could get pretty high. I certainly have more peeves than I have nuggets of advice. My tombstone will probably be inscribed with, “You know what REALLY pisses me off?” (of course my answer in that case would be dying, but I digress). I have some pretty strong opinions on just about everything. Lucky for you I like to share. So, you’re welcome.
Rant #1 – Complainers
Look, I know that it is a contradiction for me to list complainers as my number one complaint, but I am running this show so I get to make up and break up the rules as we go along. I also am not referring to complainers in general. Where would we be today if everyone just sat around complacent all the time (we’d still be back in England under Her Majesty’s rule and we’d be able to watch the Royal Wedding at a decent hour – not 4 AM – for goodness’ sake)? The malcontents who complain to raise consciousness in order to affect change are super stars in my opinion. My gripe is with anyone who says they don’t like something but they don’t do anything about it. Complaining just for complaining’s sake is lazy and annoying. What other purpose does it serve but to put icky vibes out in the world?
You know that those icky vibes just float around until they land on some unsuspecting, random person, right? That is my theory as to why you’re just sitting on the beach and a bird might poop on you. Or you get a flat tire. Or you are about to host twenty kids for a birthday party at your house and the kitchen sink clogs and your kid throws up and your spouse announces that he has to go out of town for three days next week, leaving you to single parent while he is gone. It has nothing to do with merit. I just think that’s how stuff goes around. It also helps me understand how bad things happen to good people.
Here’s the thing. You should be allowed to complain about something, but only once. It is good to evaluate the problem and state it aloud in order to identify it. But then you should be required to do something about it. No, you can’t fix every problem yourself. There are practicalities like money (you need it) and biology (you can’t really change it) that sometimes can not be circumvented. Be practical and get creative. You hate your thighs? Eat better and work out more. You hate being short? Wear high heels. Your spouse doesn’t help out enough around the house? First, ask for his help (nobody is a mind reader), then print out a To-Do list that you can tackle together. Your kids don’t listen? Discipline them. All the time, not just when it is easy or convenient.
Life can be really hard sometimes. Some people just get a really bad deal, but most people are pretty lucky. You can be in control of your own life. You have the power to make it different if you are unhappy. It probably won’t be easy or pretty or fun, especially if you’re thinking about a massive change. But you will be taking charge of your life and living it the way you want to live it. Keep your hands on the plow and your eye on the prize.
Once upon a time Sheepdog and I were completely unhappy and on the verge of divorce. We lived in a house that was too expensive for us and we both worked all the time in order to pay for it (barely). I was going through the motions of being a wife/ mother/ daughter/ sister/ friend/ employee/ homemaker, but I pretty much sucked at all of it. I was miserable. Sheepdog was miserable. I was the “yelling mom” so I’m sure the girls were miserable. We complained all the time. Then one day we just realized that we had the ability to change things if we wanted to. So we sold our house and moved down South, where real estate was more reasonably priced. Sheepdog got a new job that enabled me to stay at home full-time. It was scary and insane and the best thing that could have ever happened to our family.
So suck it up, people. Stop complaining unless you’re going to do something about it. Teach your children how to do it. Lead by example and enlighten your friends. Empowerment is contagious! But so is a throwing up kid, so please stop your complaining.
Wish me luck for tomorrow…