Of course there were the fireworks and the story of Independence Day. We lived in the Philadelphia region and I visited Independence Hall, the Betsy Ross House or something Patriotic and American as often as I went to church.
|Let freedom ring.|
I like, like so many of you--my friends, my readers, my family--have become a hoarder of busyness. There are days I am buried in my own busyness; days when my own drive to "have it all," leads to me suffocating in it all. I have too many clothes; so too much laundry. I have to get this social engagement and I want to go to this event and I want to go on this vacation and I want to write this article and I want to volunteer for this event and I want to spend this time with my children and I want to take this class and I want and I want and I want and I want.
I want it all and I want it now. And there is no room. There is no room for one more thing; but I will make room. I will squeeze it in. It will be tight, but as long as the pile of social engagements does not collapse; then the pile of writing goals will remain balanced and then the pile of time with my children will also remain standing and maybe, just maybe I can eek out a little oxygen from the microscopic spot of freedom; which typically exists between the hours of midnight and 5 a.m.
I know I am not the only one who bought into the dream of "it all." I know I am not the only one who's father looked them in the eye at dinner and said to my 20-something-self: "You can't have it all at once. It is just not possible. You have it all over a lifetime. Not in a day."
And I know I am not the only one who laughed at this old man--and thought, he is just from a different generation. He hasn't a clue.
But, now, as I struggle to have it all, I find myself bound by the tyranny of myself. I am the King, the Despot who asks for more taxes and more time. I ask for more hours spent volunteering or more hours in the kitchen or more hours at the gym or more hours writing or more hours in structured socializing. I demand it of myself. And if I don't get it, I heap on more penalties, more tariffs.
And now, I want my independence. I want to declare that I am free of myself. I want to sell my piles; toss out the things I don't need right now; maybe put them in storage until it is the right time; if that time ever comes. I want to dump my busyness in the Harbor. I want to focus on one thing at a time--not twelve.
I want the freedom; the feel of the wind in my hair. The joy of an empty calendar and the freedom to do absolutely nothing.
Happy Independence Day.