Monday, December 13, 2010


           People have always thought that I was crazy. I remember getting in big trouble my last year of high school. I did something very stupid to try to be cool to people that didn't like me.  I wrote a paper about what I did and why. I read the paper aloud in class with those same people. Afterwards someone who was not in that group but not really my friend came up and hugged me. She thanked me for showing that I was normal. She had thought that I was a perfect brown noser with no emotions. My dad is very sick with ALS. Recently a friend stopped me to tell me I inspired her because I was able to face each day without being an emotional wreck. I imagine the girl who hugged me would think that I was not upset about my father. However, my friend at work knows me well enough to realize the truth.
           The truth is that I care very much and I am deeply hurt to see my dad in such pain. Despite those emotions I have the sense to know the things I can and cannot control. I still have a great many blessings in my life. I also know that every change I go through is just leading me into a new chapter in my life.
          I believe that I am called to do something that will change many lives for the better. I'm not sure exactly how yet but each day I look forward to discovering that purpose. My happiness is controlled by that internal motivation and not by external circumstances. For example, The other day I was at work stocking paper goods. I had already been yanked to several places. Then they asked me to run a register. Like most people initially my temper was high. I felt like crying and I was bad mouthing the manager on the way to the register. When I realized how upset I was, I stopped to think about why. I made a conscience decision not to let my happiness be determined by circumstances. I went to the register, talked to the customers, and found a way to be happy.
          The only things that I can control are my attitude and my actions. If I could go back to high school and talk to the girl who hugged me, I would tell her what I am telling you. The only things that I can control are my attitude and my actions. When I was walking to the register I was making a decision to change my attitude. I changed my attitude by changing what that little voice in my head is saying. I was changing my words. At first I was saying, "I hate running a register. I'll never finish the paper goods cart. This is keeping me away from the job in toys that I was supposed to do today. I will be up here all day and then get in trouble for having overtime." I changed my words to say, "I will go run a register till it is time to go. I will do it as well as I do everything else. I will be joking and happy with customers." So maybe I seem crazy to most people but in truth I am just learning the serenity prayer.

God, grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can;
And wisdom to know the difference.

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