I have to admit, I've been putting off this post. It's hard to write about things that are so fresh you still hear the echos of them in your sleep.
This has been a hard week for me.
Usually, I would gloss my pain over with some comment about how everything will be okay and that positivity will pull you through...or how wonderful I am. Usually I would do that. But right now, I can't.
I had two very dear friends lose the life they used to know, and it's shaken me a little.
On Saturday, I got a call that my friend's house was--at that moment--burning to the ground. My other friends and I rallied and went to see how we could help. I couldn't look at the house. I knew the memories were burning with it. I was glad that I got to see my friend and tell her how sad I was for her loss, but I couldn't look at the house.
While there, one of my other friends received a call that her husband had been in a Power Parachute accident. We rushed her home and waited with her, hoping he would be okay. He wasn't. That night, she learned her husband had passed from the injuries he sustained. This time, I couldn't stop looking. I couldn't believe something like this could happen to someone I love. I couldn't believe she was going to have to deal with this as young as she was.
And I refused to sleep. For days.
Because when people we love are hurting, we are hurting. And no matter what you do, you can't change their pain and loss. It's a very helpless feeling that sticks with you no matter how hard you try to shake it off.
It's not always easy to see the bright side and this is one of those times. So right now I am giving myself to permission to feel down for a while. I'm giving myself permission to cry a lot more than I normally would. And I'm giving myself permission to be angry that such horrible things can happen to such wonderful people.
In the end, that is what makes us human. The spectrum of emotions we face in our lifetime are essential to the human experience. The bad things teach us something about ourselves and the things we prize above all else. And isn't that what we are all here for...to learn, to love, and create connections with the people around us?
I think so, too.
So to those two dear friends from my writing group, know that I am thinking about you, praying for you, and hurting for your loss. I love you.
Recently, I started a mission of self-appreciation. I made a goal in the new year to not post anything negative about myself or anyone else on my Facebook page or my blog. (So don't go reading any old blog entries, okay?)
Somehow, this has turned into a proclamation of extolling the virtues of myself as often as I can.
The funny thing is that people really, truly believe that I am some conceited prick heck-bent (that's the mormon version of hell-bent) on making myself look better than everyone else.
Which is not hard to do...
Hahaha...see what I mean?
It really has just been a big joke from the beginning. But it kind of bothers me that it has to be taken that way in order for people to accept it. I get that we are supposed to be humble and all that, but what is so wrong about looking for the positive in yourself and others?
Why is it okay to say that something bugs you, but not okay to give credit where credit is due. Case in point...the checkout line at Walmart...
It is all good if you turn to the person in front or back of you and say, "Man, these checkout lines are so freaking slow. I keep telling myself that I'll never shop at Walmart again, and yet here I am, stuck in the this stupid check-out line...AGAIN."
But it's not fine if you turn to the person in front or back of you and say, "Isn't Walmart such a great store? They have such low prices I just can't turn down coming here. I mean, I could, but I would have paid a ton more money to buy this same stuff at Kmart."
Another case in point, Your son's t-ball game.
It's great if, at your son's t-ball game, you say, "Those little boogers from that other team are cheating and man *wink, wink* I wonder if the ump is related to one of them. All the calls seem to be going in their direction."
But it's non-awesome to announce, "That other team has quit a few good players on it. The little number eight's hit was amazing. Did you see how far it went? Wow!"
And it is definitely okay to get on Facebook and say. "Man, I'm having a sucky day. The dry cleaning man burnt my shirt, my kids are driving me crazy, I'm starting to get a cold and feel like poo...etc. etc."
However, totally not cool to say, "I am so awesome. No matter what life throws at me, I smack it right back in life's face. Nothing can keep me down!" (Believe me, I know this to be true. :-))
Why are we such a society of whiners and complainers? Why do we link ourselves to others through complaint and self-doubt? Why do people like you more if you're willing to diss on yourself, but not give yourself a compliment every now and then?
Because, I have to tell you...shhhhh...lean close...I have to whisper so people don't think I'm a jerk...
Since I started this project for myself, I actually do feel as 'all that' as I pretend to. There is something about looking at the bright side on even your worst days that changes you as a person. And sometimes, when you pretend to like yourself, you find out that you actually do have a lot of amazing qualities others should be impressed by.
I'm just saying...
So I'm busting out a challenge to all of you in blog-land. If you agree with me, and you want to start looking on the bright side, and bragging about how freaking amazing you really are, take on the Margie Jordan: Year of Awesome: 2011 Challenge. It comes in three parts...
1) Comment on this post about something you rock at and become a follower. (1 Entry)
2) Be my friend on Facebook and be willing to join in on posts of 'AWESOME-NESS'...(you might want to leave a comment when you request so I don't freak out that you're stalking me...because that's what happens to people to are really amazing. (hahaha). (2 Entries)
3) Write a blog post that lists 10 things you are better at than anybody else and link it to here. (5 entries)
*You might ask, do I win something for this, and I might answer, "Yes, you win the permission to feel good about yourself." But that is a cop-out.
I'm also doing a drawing for a $25 Barnes and Noble Gift Certificate (so you can buy a 'I Don't Need No Self-Help' book), a $25 Walmart Gift Certificate (because you have to have somewhere to practice your meeting new people in a positive way), and a $25 ITunes gift card (to buy music that inspires you to be great). And yes, it is possible to win all three because I believe the first person I draw out for each one should be the winner. :-)
I am a YA author represented by Jo Schaffer of GH Literary Management. I love reading and writing and will stay up into the wee hours of the morning to finish a book I think is amazing. I also work as an Instructional Coach for Nebo School District and am a wife and mother of three. Welcome to my crazy life!