I sometimes imagine that venting my emotions to another person is like handing them a scoop of oatmeal without a bowl. It’s messy and confusing and awkward, and only my very best friends are usually up to the challenge.
Today, I’m embarrassed to say, I’m branching out. If you’re uncomfortable with emotional women, move along. If you’re brave enough to stick around, welcome to the inside of my brain.
This is Amanda: Character Development Edition.
I’m over it. I’m done.
I’m kind of angry. It’s a good anger though. A get-stuff-done, not-taking-crap-from-anyone, this-is-ending-here-and-now kind of anger.
I’m over being afraid of money. I’m sick of it. In a world where money is so fickle, where it can be salvation one minute and destruction the next, where everything depends on it, I’m saying no. If I have to have money, if I have to deal with money, if I have to rely on money, I REFUSE to be defeated by it anymore. If I don’t have enough food, I don’t have enough food. If I can’t pay for my car, I can’t pay for my car. If my health insurance lapses, my health insurance lapses. Obviously I don’t want any of these things to happen, but if they must happen, I’ll face them courageously. I can’t snap my fingers and magically make jobs appear where there are none. I can’t make a wish and lower taxes. I can’t summon a genie to pay off my debts. There are no magical pantry-filling fairies.
But I can refuse to be afraid. I can refuse to bow to fear. My fear will not fix my problems. If I’m going to take the same action, do the same amount of work, and face the same monsters, then the emotion itself is superfluous. It’s unnecessary. And it’s not welcome in my life or my mind anymore.
I wanted to be free. I thought that freedom meant downsizing my stuff beyond all recognition, getting out of debt, and finding a job that I love. To an extent, all of those things do contribute to my freedom. But I miscalculated. My biggest chain, and heaviest weight, is this. Fear keeps me from believing that amazing things can come from catastrophe. Fear prevents me from aiming higher, from trying harder, from wanting more. Fear is my jailor, and it’s so crafty and so sneaky that I didn’t, until now, know that I was imprisoned.
So here’s my decision: I’m not going to stop playing the “what if” game – I’m just going to change the rules. From now on, instead of asking myself “what if the worst happens?” I’m going to ask “what if the best happens?” Instead of entertaining thoughts like “what if I don’t get a miracle?” I’m going to think “what if I do?” If – no, when – against all odds, everything works out in the end, I want everyone to think that it was all on purpose. I want the world to believe that it was all just a part of the plan.
And I’m going to cling to the belief that God does not punish His children for trying and failing. I’m choosing to believe that, like any good father, He’s cheering me on.
So, I’m done with fear.
Thank you for listening. Let me get you some napkins for that oatmeal.