We all have them. I know we do.
Somedays we wake up and feel down. Angry maybe. Grumpy certainly. A little fed up with the way things are, even though they are no better or worse than yesterday. Even though there is nothing obviously negative in our lives to feel bad about.
I read the Daily Prompt today, thinking that maybe I would join in. I read a few of the posts by other bloggers. And the more I considered what I would say, the blacker my mood got. Oh dear!
Write a letter to your 14-year-old self. Tomorrow, write a letter to yourself in 20 years.
I am not worried about what I would say to my 14 year old self. That I think would be quite straight forward. ‘Give up on chasing that boy. He is older than you, he is not interested and you are frankly embarrassing the hell out of yourself. Stop being a loner, go and make the most of the opportunities this school has to offer. Things get much much better. And for goodness sake, get some dress sense.’
No, that I think is fairly standard advice to give most teenagers.
What got me down is thinking about what I would say to myself in 20 years time. Let’s see.
‘What have you done with yourself over the last twenty years then? Hey – have you achieved anything? You still do the same job, you work your backside off month to month so that you have some extra cash, which you spend on frivolities and a week away now and then. Do your kids like you or have they left home thinking you never had time for them because you were always working? Have you got around to exploring the world yet? Or now, facing another 10 years or more of working life before you get to retirement, do you ever see that happening?’
‘Are you still living in the same place? I bet you come home every day and have the same conversations, the same routine. Cook dinner, watch Eastenders, doze off, go to bed. Then up to work again. What happened to you? You got old and you did nothing with all the years in between! Where has the spice in your life gone?‘
But then, as I started to write this down, to describe my bad mood and how boring and dull my life is, it occurs to me that I am actually complaining about things I should be pleased about. Let me start again.
‘What have you done with yourself over the last twenty years? Wow, you and Mr G are still together! Still making each other laugh, still bickering, still cuddling. What a great relationship you have. You chose right there.
And you are still working? Ok, so you never did win the lottery but you have had a career and you have always been able to provide for your kids. Fantastic. Did they leave home already? Independent and capable, what better gift could you have given them than the confidence to know they can be whatever they want to be?
Isn’t it comforting to know that you have someone to come home to? Yes, the daily routine is the same. Thank goodness for that! Far better than coming home to a cold lonely house. You have worked hard over the last twenty years to make a great home and fabulous family. What an achievement! Well done.
PS. You finally got the place decorated the way you wanted. I bet that took some doing!‘
You know what – I don’t feel so moody now. Some people want to be famous, some people want to be rich, some people want to cure cancer. Hats off to them. My achievements may not impact highly on the richter scale of life, but they are important to me.