Jun 15, 2009

Apparently I don't have feelings or I just don't understand

By Stacy Johnson

I am so sick of people saying that I don’t understand or that their life is so much harder than mine is. I don’t think I am one of those that goes around apologizing for all the things I can’t do because there are so many things going on in my life that I just can’t do them all. If I do, someone please let me know. Life is about choices and with every choice there is a consequence either for good or for bad. Every choice I make is made of my own free will. I am not forced to provide each of my children the opportunity to play a sport, learn a musical instrument, do their chores, etc., Nobody forces me to waste time on FaceBook or blogs. I do it by choice. Does it make my life busy and complicated? Yes. Does that mean that other less important things have to be pushed aside? Yes. Does this mean that I expect others to pick up the slack for my family because my life is busy and hard? No.

My point is, that if your life is too hard or too complicated, do something about it. I don’t enjoy listening to you complain about how hard things are or that I need to understand where you are coming from or why I should pick up your slack because of the choices you have made. It is called accountability. I know this is a tough concept for some to grasp, but every time you make a choice to do something, there will be a consequence. If you complain that you don’t have enough money to make ends meet, you might need to start buying your groceries at WalMart instead of the organic food store. If you don’t have enough money to pay your mortgage, consider turning off your cable/satellite television or cell phone. If you don’t have enough time in your day to accomplish important tasks, consider turning off the t.v. or just watching less. If you are constantly robbing Peter to pay Paul, consider taking cheaper or no vacations.

I’ve been thinking really hard about this and the only exception I can see are unforeseen tragedies; death, divorce, job loss, etc. I mean really tragic things. These can throw a loop in your life that you aren’t prepared for. This is the time when it is totally appropriate to come to the aid of our families, friends, neighbors, and perfect strangers.

I can also consider depression an exception for a little while. I don’t think I could have said that a few years ago until I experienced it myself. My post partum was slight and I don’t even know that I confessed it to anyone but I suffered deeply and quietly. The difference is, that I figured out what to do about it. You might need to consider drugs although I reserve that for severe cases. Once you notice it, do something about it. Don’t just sit there and suffer. Figure out what makes you feel better and do it. Don’t complain about it.

One of my favorite movie lines comes from the John Cusack movie Say Anything. Lloyd is having a conversation with his sister whose husband has left her and their toddler son. Lloyd lives with his sister while finishing his senior year in high school. She is extremely unhappy with her life. Lloyd says, “How hard is it to make a choice to be happy and then BE happy?” His sister sarcastically replies, “Gee, it’s easy.” I am not saying that it is easy, but it is a choice and with that choice comes a good consequence.

Bad things happen. We all suffer little setbacks occasionally. But, if you are constantly in a state of explaining to people that your life is so hard and trying to get people to understand, you might need to reflect on that for a while and consider what you might be doing different to improve your life. I’m off my soapbox now. I don’t mean to be harsh, but I needed to vent that.


  1. Thanks for venting what so many of us think, Stacy.

  2. Scapegoats are common, and those who are willing to face the truth about themselves are rare. Rose colored glasses scew the true picture. Excuses cloud reality --- and on it goes.

  3. The hardest thing I've learned in dealing with people Stacy is that they don't understand they have a choice. They honestly think they don't. It's a hard concept but once you grasp it, your live is infinitely better. Well said.

  4. I don't know. If someone tells me their life is so much harder than mine, I tend to believe them and am more grateful for my wonderful kids, a sound mind (most days) and a testimony of the gospel.

    I empathize with those who feel so battered and grey and hope they eventually remember that the sun is always shining somewhere.

  5. wow, Stacy...you stated something that many of us feel, but don't express. What you said is true. We always have a choice. Even when events take place that are out of our control...or the result of other people's choices...we can choose what we are going to do with that experience. Those who have grasped this concept have the responsibility to do what I will blog about in a few minutes..to strengthen your "sisters" in all your conversations, prayers, exhortations and in all you doings.Thanks for your honesty and condor...and leading up to my day to blog!

  6. Yea, verily, Stacy. You got that right. I once put this into a little poem, which you might enjoy, especially since it echoes your thoughts.

    Choose wisely, for the choice is yours.
    And remember, always,
    For every action there is
    A built-in irrevocable consequence.
    It may not come immediately,
    But it always catches up.

    Since you cannot choose one act
    And another consequence,
    Why not choose the consequence first?
    Then you will know how to act.


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