The sound from above mimicked that of an earthquake. The “booms” and “thuds” sounded like a thunderstorm, which was raining shot puts. I couldn’t imagine that the upstairs of our house would hold up a great deal longer. If the second floor of my home came crashing down into my bedroom, I would not have been the least bit surprised. The madness and the chaos coming from above was as intense as any that I have ever heard.
As the ruckus continued, I took a moment, allowed myself to enjoy the goosebumps that were running throughout my body, and I gave the most sincere thanks to whomever/whatever is responsible for my existence. Judging from the pounding coming from the other end of my ceiling, I knew that this was not the end… but only the beginning. As I laid there smiling, I took the opportunity to steal a glance at my beautiful wife, as she contently read her magazine. I watched as she enjoyed the sounds of the house, as it shook on it’s foundation.
You see, the thundering from above was caused by our ten year old son, Grayson. He was shooting basketball in his bedroom, which obviously involved bouncing off of walls and jumping from his bed. This was the sound of a child’s imagination filled with promise, and the excitement of the future. This was the sound of happiness. This was the sound of the clock running out, a fast break after a steal, and an NBA title being won. This was the noise of a child being a child. These were the sounds of a young boy, who felt as if his world was secure, and his future contained stability. This was the sound of a world that I am fortunate to be a part of.
This was not always the case.
At this moment, our son’s room was loud, but his nerves were quiet. It was not long ago that his room lay still, while his head was busy with uncertainty and confusion. This was because his dad couldn’t do right, and was allowing chaos to spread like an infection throughout the entire house. This was the way things used to be in my house. This was the way things were in my house. This was the house I created. This was the mess that I created, because of constantly neglecting the responsibility, that I knew deep down to be mine. This was the house for which I was responsible.
My house is different today.
As I reveled in the security of my bedroom, surrounded by all of it’s comforts, I stepped back and took inventory of all the good things around me. I was grateful for my wife, my children, my health, and my home. I was grateful for my seven year old daughter, as she lay asleep in her bed. It was only one night prior that we found an abscess on Andie Kate’s tooth, and now, less than twenty four hours later, she had been seen by an educated dentist and prescribed antibiotics by a licensed pharmacy with sterile facilities.
This is the world I live in. This is the universe I occupy. This is how things look in my house, and I have the power to dictate how loud and happy, or quiet and afraid, I will have my house to be. This is my house, not the house of anyone outside of this house. There is not a force in the world who has the ability to operate the thermostat of contentment in my own house, more than my wife and I. The choice, the responsibility, and the obligation lies strictly in our hands. We, more than anyone else, are responsible for whatever mood envelopes our house.
I don’t understand how government works. I never paid that much attention in school, so I have little understanding of how our nation operates. Some would argue that I am what is wrong with our country, and those people might be right. I choose not to argue, because I’d rather be happy than right.
There is so much about the outside world that I don’t understand, but there is even more that I can’t control. However, I understand my world, and I even have at least some degree of control in it. I don’t know how Congress affects Senate, or if Senate affects Legislature. But I do know how chaos, anger, and resentment affect the people in my house. I don’t know how big pharma affects economy or economy affects interest rates. But, I do know how a playful smile, a big bear hug, or a thumb wrestling match affect the people in my universe.
We live in a world where the oldest generation is great. The next generation is selfish. The later generation lacks identity. The newer generations are too sensitive. All the while, the most recent problems are caused by ribbons, or trophies, or some variation of that. I have heard the buck passed down the line and going all sorts of non-nonsensical directions, but I seldom hear of earlier generations taking responsibility for the following one. I’m beginning to think that all of the old days were good, the present days are chaotic and stressful, and all of the days ahead are filled with only the promise of doom, gloom, and destruction. How long has this held true, and how long do I want to believe that life is only going to get worse, all the while having each of my basic needs met…in abundance?
I don’t know much, but I do know that the “self-accountability generation” has not yet come about. The generation that accepts responsibility for it’s own happiness and position in life, has not reared its head. The group of people who puts the weight on their own shoulders, and does their best job to balance and distribute the load, the best way they know how, without placing their burdens along with their blame at the feet of others, has not yet surfaced. The problems in my house have always been caused by the way I act in and outside of my house. The energy in my house is not determined by elections, electronics, or participation trophies. I will not allow myself to fall under this self-delusion, and to shift blame onto anything outside of my home. The happiness in my house is caused by the actions and attitudes of the people in my house. All of my happiness, anger, enthusiasm, sadness, excitement, and fear meets up and crawls into bed, each and every night, at my house. I am responsible for how I let each of these things to be on display. I am responsible for how my children perceive the world, and the majority of how they react to it will be based on how much responsibility I accept for my own actions and situation. The responsibility is on my house…not the White House.
Don’t let the world fool you into believing that security and contentment are contingent upon actions at a level outside of your pay grade. It’s your world. Your responsibility.
Peace, Love, and all things Beef related,