Morning Meditations #122: Pity Parties and Book Reviews

MM 122
The first cool weather and real wood fire of the season. The last fires I built were on my summer meditation and writing retreat the past June. We roasted marshmallows, and Ivy played with burnt sticks to mark up the fence. So sweet.

I felt pretty low yesterday.  Kinda selfish considering I get to start a couple of classes this week, but I’ve used most of my financial aid available to undergraduates. Don’t know how I am going to afford it.  I guess I am lucky to get anything considering I have had a degree for 16 months now. Not that degrees do anybody any good if you have a wretched back but aren’t considered disabled. I had a compassionate guy from workforce a couple of days ago suggest that I volunteer in retail to get my foot in the door. I had to respond with undetected sarcasm to prevent self-loathing from setting in, “Whoa, I hadn’t thought of that yet.”

Retail is one of the factors that led to my current predicament of never having made anywhere near 30k a year, even in management. The irony is that’s one of the reasons I decided on college, retail had betrayed me—physically and financially. I didn’t think college was the answer, but I had hoped that it would open doors for other opportunities.

Thus far, the only opportunity college has opened financially is the opportunity to pay the government and the U of A more money. I know both of those things are businesses, therefore they should be after all the money in the world.

This is all pity party nonsense, I realize this, but I needed to vent, and I don’t like doing it on regular social media any longer. The urge hits me to type something into a status update interface; then I don’t. I remember how happy so many people seem, and they don’t want social media to rain on their parade. Besides, nobody cares.

I know people are casually concerned, but we all know other than a few words, if you don’t see or talk to somebody on the reggie, nobody knows what to do or has the inspiration to do anything real to help. I’ve talked about my situation at length in blogs and posts, nobody’s offered me a job or tactical relief. I don’t guess I would want them to anyway.

I would rather be responsible for climbing out of the horrible financial and physical hole I have spent nearly 40 years digging. And if I am to become even less productive and successful, I would rather my daughter see that and try to achieve and succeed everywhere her father has failed. Which is financially, physically, and in relationships. I admit, I feel like a total failure most of the time.

I don’t let that feeling rule me or make decisions for me. I don’t care that I am a failure by Western standards. I know that shit is just conditioning. I get to do and participate in more than most of the people on the planet. As an example, I have been inspired to begin a new series.

The Free Thinking Press will be running a new series of book reviews focused on self-help books. I think it will be hilarious. I have already done one of these reviews on the An Arkansas Atheist blog of the book The Five Love Languages, with which I will kick off the series. I have another on deck that I have already read and collected notes for, should be coming out soon. I think I am going to do one a week.  There may be other book reviews, but I am going to focus on the self helps for now because of three main reasons.

1. Happiness Research

The research project I have been working on requires a deep understanding of what cultures believes happiness essentially is. There is some considerable work already done in this department. Although, I think there is still a leaning on a belief that happiness is something that should be sought after or could be achieved. While there are many people who look back on their life and feel happy about it, that is also a fleeting experience that will be replaced by a headache, hunger, pain from colon cancer, etc. It isn’t wrong to be pleased with life, but it is also important to realize that happiness isn’t real, not like 2 x 4’s, sandstone, and staplers anyway.

2. I Don’t Have Many Book Reviews Under My Belt

I read six books at a time and post quotes from them all the time. When a writer reads as much as I do, there may be a moral obligation to report on the books we read. Not saying everyone needs to behave this way, but I have an opportunity to share knowledge. That sounds like a moral imperative.

I need to step up. Not to mention, book reviews will work towards the writing challenge. A textbook controlled pair.

3. Maybe I’ll Find Something Helpful

The best part about reading self-help books is they may help me. So far The Five Love Languages did in fact open the door for some new ways of thinking. The second in the series gave me lots of new playthings and tools. So both have been a wise read regardless if I thought I needed “help.”

Of course I guess we all need help, especially when we believe we don’t.

Sounds like I am doing what I should be doing, and with a lot of luck, maybe I’ll find some success and resources along the way.


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