I grew up in a loving home. 2 parents who still love each other. A brother who 90% of the time I got along with great. In a house that my mom made into a wonderful home. We attended church as a family every Sunday. We walked around the corner to go to school. We ate dinner at the dinner table every night. All that was missing from that stereotypical “perfect” childhood was the picket fence and a dog. I love the way I grew up. I love my family. My parents are still a huge part of my life.
However, as we grow up, we are faced with expectations of how we are going to live our lives. After all, history tends to repeat itself for a reason… it’s what we know. Sure, we tend to do some things differently, but for the most part we do what we know. Add in what society tells us and we are put in a box. Some of the beliefs that were in my box:
- go to church on Sundays
- spend time with your children
- don’t smoke or do drugs
- sex should wait until marriage and is to have children
- we stay quiet about our problems and issues
- don’t live together before marriage
- people who love you don’t hurt you
- drinking alcohol should be after you’re 21 and only on rare occasions
- friendships last
- Disney fairy-tale marriages
As I’ve grown up, I have started to push back…I want to get out of my box. Maybe not all the way out of my box, but I want to feel comfortable discovering new ideas and things. I might kick some ideas out of my box and bring some new ideas in. But the goal is that my box isn’t shut like I assumed it was even a few years ago. I have the power to determine what I want to believe and how I want my box to look.
I have to remember that it is MY box. Some of the things in my box may not look like the things in others boxes…and that is okay. I’m not asking people to take on my line of thought. I’m not forcing them to like it. I would appreciate the respect that it is my box and the beliefs and trials are mine.
I will go into more detail into some of these in future blog posts, but here is how I’m challenging the ideas in my box:
- go to church on Sundays – This one is hard… I have an up and down relationship with the church…
- spend time with your children – I love my children more than life itself. However, it’s okay to be me sometimes too
- don’t smoke or do drugs – I’ve done the smoking thing…cigarettes aren’t my jam. Weed is different. Not wanting to do anything more than that.
- sex should wait until marriage and is to have children – I’m a consenting adult? I love it! I’m in an open marriage. Sex does NOT equal love.
- we stay quiet about our problems and issues – and we wonder why mental health is a struggle?
- don’t live together before marriage – living with people is hard. and you want me to commit my life to them without knowing their grossest habits?
- people who love you don’t hurt you – Not true. Intentional and accidental. It happens.
- drinking alcohol should be after you’re 21 and only on rare occasions – Sure, I don’t feel the need to get plastered anymore, but I enjoy a drink
- friendships last – This is a hard one…because they don’t. Friendships change…and sometimes its harder than a relationship ending
- Disney fairy-tale marriages – haven’t the writers ever been married? Marriage is HARD sometimes.
What ideas have been in your box forever that you should challenge?