wells1I’m not worried about what President Obama is going to do “for” me..I’m worried about what the current administration is going to do “TO” me..”TO” our country and “TO” our freedoms.  I realize that my way of thinking  is a big difference from the people waiting in line for all the ways that the country can relieve them of all personal responsibility and save them.  I realize, to my dismay, that I’m fast becoming the minority in our country.

I was raised to believe that life isn’t meant to be a cakewalk and always easy. We seem to be quickly becoming a nation of those that expect no consequences for poor personal decisions. We are becoming a nation of people that don’t know how to fail and then pick themselves up and find ways to be better than before. We are quickly becoming a nation of people that expect something for nothing in a bottomless all-you-can eat buffet of handouts and bailouts.

Where does it all stop? I used to think that things would hit bottom and we’d recover and be stronger than ever. It’s always been the American way..the dogged determination to find ways to succeed. It’s what has made our country unique over the decades. Our country was founded by those that left a hard life with little to no possibility for personal freedoms or growth and left all that they knew for an uncertain future where they could be in control of their own destiny.

I’m now not so sure there is a bottom to find. I get up each morning and check the headlines.  It’s like we are in some bizarre loop as was portrayed in “Groundhog Day” and events just keep repeating over and over again..with more and more desperate flailing to try and stop the freefall.

Here’s a concept. Just stop.

Breathe.

Slow down and think first before simply reacting blindly without a clear direction.

Know that we are all going to hurt and not live charmed lives for a while. Let the American spirit that I still believe to be present in a lot of the population, albeit undrawn upon in recent years..to rekindle and resurface.  Realize that life has changed, deal with it, and find ways to make it better.  Will it be easy?  Of course not!  So many have forgotten or never learned in the first place that easy things are seldom as precious as those we fight or work for.

We need to not be ruled by fear and desperation that would lead to making hasty ill-advised decisions without thinking first. We need to learn to once again stand up on our own two feet and improvise when things get tough.  While thankfully it’s not the case right now…I have known personally and lived through the uncertainty and fear of being without a job and wondering how you will provide for a family and pay bills and at times even meet the basic needs of food or health care. It purely sucks. I have always known how to “make do” with what is available and when the times aren’t as good, how to find ways to survive.

It’s a lost art that is going to have to be relearned by some and learned for the first time by many others.  So many need to learn to not count on the government to bail them out or rescue them..to instead learn again how to depend on themselves.

The times and era of overindulgence and excess are over..perhaps for good. The world has changed in fundamental ways which will effect our way of life in this country as well.  We all profited and benefited in ways large and small during the bountiful years and we are all going to hurt to some degree in the years to come. 

Life has changed as we know it. It’s up to all of us to find ways to make it an adventure and to succeed.  It will be difficult and at times purely terrifying.  That is part of living..as uncomfortable and unwanted as some parts of that life can be, there are always bright spots to be found and cherished if you take the time to look for them.  If you stop expecting rescue and readjust your thinking to realize each day is a new opportunity.  Every day is different.  The next day may be just as lousy as the one before, but it will be different with different opportunities to make a change or a difference.  The next day is rarely always just as bad.  Sometimes the good might be minuscule in it’s scope, but it’s there if you look.

We are Americans. We are NOT due or promised a charmed life. We ARE promised our freedoms and the ability to make our own decisions as to what is best for our own families.

We need to remember that..find our courage and our bootstraps..and start pulling OURSELVES up.

I, for one, don’t want to have to depend on the kindness of others for my day to day existence.  While I’m not above asking for help if it’s a matter of survival or life and death, I’m also not afraid of struggle and hardship.  It makes the good times sweeter when they come..and they will come eventually.  Those good times may not be exactly as we envisioned…but savor them anyway.

Learn how to be proud Americans again and not a wimpy nation of those waiting and expecting to be taken care of by others.  Learn to deal with hardship and be innovative and inventive.  It’s the American way that has been lost.

Fight to get it back.  Don’t wait for others to do the work and think that you can’t possibly make a difference.  Learn to be the one person YOU can always depend on.  Trust yourself and realize that this too will all pass.  The better times may not arrive on our schedule or be exactly what we imagined, but…

There ARE better days ahead for us all.
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