In response to The Daily Post’s Daily Prompt 3/16/2016 | Envy
One of my biggest pet peeves when it comes to myself is my somewhat lack of appreciation for the things that I have. Yes, I am aware that this is a huge, obnoxious flaw on my otherwise sterling list of personality traits, but I also feel like we are all guilty of this to some degree, even if we try to say that we aren’t. We live in a society that tells us that our worth is based off of what we look like, and how much stuff we have, and this makes us want more and more, even when we already have all that we need. Everyone does it. Try as I may, I can not seem to change this ugly thing about myself, though I have gotten much better about accepting my life and certain situations in recent years.
I think my envious nature peaked in high school, and plateaued pretty terribly over the next few years. I was jealous of every single person that I met, sometimes over the most ridiculous things. So much so, that I became bitter toward people, even complete strangers, for having things that I did not. And, of course, when you focus all your energy on all of the things that you don’t have, you don’t leave yourself enough energy to love the things you do have, especially when it comes to personal things, such as appearance.
I still have days where I want to curl up into a tiny ball of hatred thanks to my envy of the most trivial, unimportant things, but I’ve got a pretty decent handle on it these days. Growing up, and starting a family, has opened my eyes, and has helped me appreciate many of the things that I do have in my life, both big and small.
I’ve struggled with my weight throughout most of my teenage and adult life, and sometimes, when I see a thin girl wearing something cute that I don’t think I could pull off, I get upset. But then I remind myself that I am aware of my body, and I am working on it, and some day, I could wear that same outfit with confidence. She may have insecurities as well. No one is perfect. Yes, I have a weight problem, but I am otherwise healthy. I have perfect blood pressure, perfect cholesterol, no major back problems, and no underlying medical conditions that attribute to my weight issue that would make it impossible to lose weight. I am healthy, and if I really hate my appearance that much, I do have the power to change it. The only thing stopping me, is me.
I also get jealous over gorgeous hair, flawless skin, full lips, etc… but hey, that is just genetics. And those who don’t have it, either embrace what they were born with, or fake it. And I don’t particularly want to be fake.
The one thing that I have been obnoxiously proud of in my life is my son. My handsome, energetic, brilliant son. My son, who has been sleeping through the night, every night, since he was 4 months old. My son, who is tall and skinny and perfect. My son, who amazes me every day with how advanced he is with his development. My son, who embraces strangers’ children at the park because he loves people and playing. I am so freaking proud of the little human that I created, and I pat myself on the back for being a huge factor in who he is today. I rock.
Money. Everyone wants more money. People who say money doesn’t matter, or money can’t buy happiness, are lying. Have you ever been behind on paying your bills, and have run the risk of having your power and heat shut off in the middle of winter? Have you ever looked in your cabinet, and saw that your baby was almost out of formula, and it would be a solid week before you could afford more? These things cause massive amounts of stress and anxiety on people. I’ve struggled with these things. Luckily, our financial situation has stabilized, and we are so much better off than we were just a year ago. My husband works his butt off so that I can stay home to raise our beautiful son, and we are still able to have full bellies and paid bills, even with only one of of working. We have a crummy apartment, but we aren’t homeless. We don’t have a Mercedes, but we have a reliable car that gets us around safely. We don’t have new, high end furniture, but we have comfy beds where we dream of a better future, a used couch that my son loves to climb on, and everything in our apartment serves it’s purpose.
Being jealous of what other people have is normal, in my opinion. I find myself still feeling it from time to time, most often with my sister-in-law, who is two months younger than me, but she has a house, two cars, and is constantly decorating and redecorating her home in beautiful ways. But I also know that she is in debt. A lot of debt. I have no debt. None at all. I also have a phenomenal credit score, and I don’t even have any credit cards. When she got pregnant at a young age, she lived at home with her mother for a long time with her boyfriend, and did not have to work to pay bills. They were able to just save and save and save. Her now husband has a great job, and was able to support her for several years, and was able to buy her a car, and pay for her to go to school, so that she could get a decent job, and they were able to save up until they could buy a house.
She is still in debt, and complains about it often, yet is constantly buying new furniture, and gets her nails and hair done bi-weekly. Having the prettiest house on Pinterest, and the most sparkly nails at work, are not goals that I want to obtain. I want my son to have a college fund. I don’t feel like the understands the value of money, and how crippling debt can be, because of being handed things, and I guess that is where we vary. Our situations are wildly different, because we had different advantages and disadvantages, which obviously would lead to different outcomes.
I got off on a bit of a tangent, and I’m not quite sure where I was going, so I guess I’ll leave it there. Sorry about that. I guess what I was trying to say was that everyone has a different story, and that green may be my favorite color, but it is not flattering to wear green on your heart. Everyone has been dealt a different set of cards, and that will have a huge impact on the game and how we play it.
Take some time to appreciate your cards, because while you may not have a Royal Flush, your Full House is still better than that other guy’s hand, which spontaneously combusted, burning both the cards, and his hands, and then he was rushing to the hospital, but he didn’t have insurance because he lives in a crappy country with an even crappier healthcare system, and he were slapped with an outrageous medical bill that he will never be able to pay because he never got to finish school, because he couldn’t afford the high tuition at the community college he attended, and doesn’t have anyone who can help him out financially, so he has since been stuck working menial, dead end jobs that pay poverty wages, making it impossible for him to go back to school to finish his education, even though he really, really wants to so that he can have a better life, but now he is horribly in debt, and now people will call him lazy for the rest of his life without knowing a damn thing about his struggles to try and build a better life for himself.
Yeah. You’re probably at least slightly better off than that guy. So appreciate your shit.
Thanks for reading, friends.