Thursday, December 10, 2015

First World Problems

Hope is a strange thing. We Americans (and busybodies of all nations and ethnicities) constantly sweat the small stuff. We sweat it so much that we even make fun of our superficial problems with hashtags like #firstworldproblems and #fml.  I could pretend like I'm above all these things but let's be real; I get horribly upset if the person I like rejects me. I get all whiny when I can't go out with my friends because I spent my money on take-out because I was too lazy to cook. I am typically distressed over room mates, employers and most authority figures (because sometimes it feels like everyone has authority over my life, except me).  I freak out if every inch of my body isn't covered in lotion within five minutes of exiting the shower. And it has to be the good stuff, too. Don't give me that dollar store crap. I need that Eucerin or Jergens The stuff that can lubricate cars for years. These are my "problems".

The funny thing about First World Problems is that we make them ourselves.

I mean whose fault is it that you don't have any money to pay that bill after partying? Whose fault is it that your friend or significant other got pissed at you because you got trashed and said something stupid? Whose fault is it that you're in jail because you didn't feel like paying for that new iPhone 4684SQ 2.0 (no that's not a thing)? It's yours. And while we scamper about like bunnies lamenting over our insignificant problems there are people with very real life or death problems. And while we feel hopeless because we didn't get our dream job or school or we have shitty luck with finding a mate or no one likes us, those who are in desperate situations are completely capable of finding real hope in the future.

When I witness situations like these, it calls me to re-evaluate my life. My priorities. My "problems". Yes, sometimes it is difficult to compare each person's problems, much like it is to compare one's physical pain to another; but we have to stop and ask ourselves: What problems can I fix with a little more effort and a little less whining? Just as important: What problems can't be fixed? What is outside of my control? Would all the fuss and hoo-haw and effort even change the outcome? If not, perhaps it would serve me better to take a deep breath, thank God I am alive (because you only get one life) roll up my sleeves and then rebuild.


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