Thank you to J-Dubs Grin and Bear Its Is for her post for #SOCS. I read hers and wanted to try the challenge too. #SOCS Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “choices.” Base your post on the subject of making small, uneventful choices. Enjoy!
I’m a Libra, so I am very indecisive – by nature. It wasn’t my choice – or was it? The stars were how they were when I was born, and apparently, the sun’s degree and position deemed my ability to decide what to eat, how to live, who to love, and what socks to wear would be fraught with questions and doubt.
I don’t think it’s fair – by telling myself “my nature” is indecisive, then I tell myself I simply can’t help not being able to choose, right? I mean, my mind likes to run through every feasible scenario and I simply cannot help if I naturally draw conclusions between mistakes and the end of the world, right?
I don’t know. That’s the rub. I’m never going to know if I did choose the right socks or pizza until I have them. It doesn’t matter how big or little the decision is, choosing is terrifying. It’s a commitment to a path I’m never sure I want to be on because what if the choice is wrong? What if it’s right? What if I wasn’t even supposed to be thinking about this? Who knows?!
It’s such a burden, or is it? I mean, aren’t choices the very crux of my own power? When someone asks me what I want to do and I say the opposite of what I want to do, haven’t I chosen to make myself unhappy?
If someone asks how I am and I choose to not answer honestly, I’ve chosen to hide, and sometimes I think that’s a good choice and sometimes I think it’s a cop-out. Personally, I think every time I tell myself I have to do anything is a cop-out. If I truly believe in free will, then I choose to believe my choice is everything. I’m unsure if the divine has set the menu I choose from, or if a combination of all the parts of me and all the parts of everything I think aren’t me created all of this. But, I think that life is a “choose your own adventure”. I think the path conforms to your selection, and I tend to give all of that power away by saying “I have to”..
One day, I got in a fight with the boys. They don’t believe they should have to do homework or schoolwork or anything preceding work. I have been trying to avoid telling people they have to do things because of all the things I just said. I don’t want to raise my kids thinking they have to let someone else think for them. I don’t want to teach them to have to. I want to teach them how to choose so that they don’t have to learn the power of their choice and their voice in their 30s when they’ve already chosen a lot of misery.
So I said, “You don’t have to do anything. However, things like screens are privileges. Privileges come from responsibility. By doing the things you are responsible for, you earn the privileges you enjoy. So while you may not want to do whatever work, you do want screens. In order to get screens, work must be done. Therefore, the truth is you actually do want to do your work, because you want screens. And without work, there are no screens. You don’t have to do your work, but I don’t have to give you screens. You see how this works?”
And I think a lot of life changes when I can remember that. Have to is a cop-out. It’s just as much of a cop-out to say I have to as I can’t decide because I’m a Libra. I am sure my astrology plays into a lot of things and I may or may not have chosen when I came onto this blue and green orb, but I know choice is everything. I know the moment I take my own choice away, I have chosen unhappiness. I know that even in things I don’t want to do, I can find a reason to choose. I tell the kids a lot lately when they’re whining about whatever First World Problem we’ve invented:
“Look, I don’t want to clean piss off a toilet seat. There’s no part of me that enjoys cleaning someone else’s urine off a toilet. It’s disgusting. It’s not even mine. I can’t fathom how all of this missing happens with such a big area to aim for. But, someone has to clean the toilets. Since no one else is cleaning toilets and I can’t stand dirty toilets, I clean them. I choose to clean them because I want them clean. You may not like homework, but you probably hate hearing me run my mouth even more. Homework and dirty toilets are what you make of it. Put on some music, get it done, and enjoy not worrying about it or getting in trouble because you didn’t do it.”
And they choose whether or not they listen to me, and I choose whether or not I get pissed off about it. Or I tell myself I’m a terrible mom, or I tell myself I’m doing everything wrong, on and on. It all depends on how I’m choosing to talk to myself in a given day and that choice alone can make or break everything. Sometimes, I choose to talk myself right into a panic attack or not being able to get out of bed because it’s too much. Sometimes, there are so many choices, I have a panic attack because I don’t like being overwhelmed. Other times, I like being so overwhelmed. I mean, how cool is it really to have so many choices? To see how you can really shape your reality by how you choose to act, see, and live. To see your happiness is a direct result of choosing instead of having to. There’s so much freedom.
So maybe dinner selections will always be my downfall. Maybe no matter what I say, I will have a monologue of all the things I said wrong or how stupid I sound. It’s nice to remember I can choose how much I listen to that, too.
Here are the rules:
1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing (typos can be fixed), and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.
2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.
3. I will post the prompt here on my blog every Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The,’” or will simply be a single word to get you started.
4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours. Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.
5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read all of them! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later or go to the previous week by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find below the “Like” button on my post.
6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!
7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.
8. Have fun!