Friday, January 20, 2012

Gratitude, Schmatitude, Oprahtitudes

"Don't sweat the small stuff." 
"Find gratitude in every day."
"Forgiveness will set you free."

Oprahtitudes = cliches and platitudes like those above, generally heard on Oprah, Dr. Phil and the like.

I know I've shared a lot recently about how wonderful my life is, so you might think I'm one of those people that lives by Oprahtitudes. Just the opposite, in fact.

When someone tells me they're trying not to sweat the small stuff, I'm more likely to say, "screw that." When a situation or person is frustrating or annoying, I think it's perfectly okay to be frustrated or annoyed. I know whenever I try to fight those feelings, they fester, I dwell, and then I feel guilty as well as frustrated/annoyed.

I'm a firm believer in venting. I have to get it off my chest, and once I've said it out loud (or okay, said it out loud 3 or 4 times), only then does it lose its power over me.

And some days really do suck. Or at least, the majority of it sucks enough that leaves me saying, "I can't wait for today to be OVER." I know that it will be. I know that the bad day included some moments of laughter, but since every day includes laughter, it diminishes the really good days to say that every day is good. And some days aren't either good or bad, they just are. Not every day can be worth remembering.

Forgiveness is a big one for me, and I finally wrote this post about Oprahtitudes thanks to Tina's post (yes, she's becoming a favorite of mine) about trying to forgive her ex. I loved what she said in her comments:

At this point, I think “accepting” him for who he is will bring the type of healing that I am seeking.

That's where I am. I've accepted X, but I don't spend much energy trying to forgive him anymore. In the same vein as sweating the small stuff, when I've tried before to forgive him, it first makes me like a failure for not being able to forgive, and then, it just pisses me off because he's the one who screwed up, so why is it up to me to be an even bigger person yet again?  So my response is again, the oh-so-eloquent, screw that. I have enough to do every day by getting the girls out of bed, getting them to school, getting myself to work, working, picking the girls up, getting them dinner, Sylvia to dance class, dealing with homework and birthday party invites and laundry and groceries and bills (oh my!) and doctor's appointments, glasses, discipline issues...any time left over is my time, thanks, and I'm not going to spend it trying to will myself into forgiveness.

Oprahtitudes are great sound bytes. If you're someone that finds true peace and happiness by not sweating the small stuff and living each day to its fullest, that's awesome, really.

Personally, I'm grateful for any day that doesn't suck. Since that's more often than not lately, that's more than good enough for me.


BigLittleWolf said...

All I can say is THANK YOU for this.

Forgiveness is helpful in many situations. In others, if you ask me, it's enabling and just damn dumb.

As for the other Oprahtudes (love it) - a few work for me now and then on certain days, and then again, don't on others. Um, a bit like real life, and anything we tell ourselves to get through the day?

Much of (American) life and parenting life and work life is tedium. It's normal. It makes the good moments better.

Why are we so determined to pretend otherwise? Why must we be so plastic to be acceptable?

And that doesn't mean we're not "positive" people. (Grrrrr) If we weren't positive, things would be very much worse!

LOVE THIS POST. Thank you.

Julie@My5monkeys said...

claps hands because thats all a person can do is accept what is :)

Great topic

Mandy said...

For me, the most difficult person to forgive for my divorce was me. Maybe it was because I initiated it and blamed myself. I know we both played a role in it but I never "blamed" my ex.

Tina Swithin said...

Yes! Love this!

Acceptance is what I strive for.