Today I Declare

Today is my independence day! I am tired of living up to the rules and perceptions of the world around me and losing myself along the way. I am tired of being “good ole’ reliable” Lisa, there to pick up the pieces, lend a hand, give good advice, solve the problem, and be on duty 24-7, while everyone else does whatever they want to do, regardless of anyone else. I am tired of being introduced only as, “someone who helps us out here” or “the wife of our a Technical Director” or “Sarah’s Mom.” I am tired of not having an identity of my own. So today I declare my personal independence. I hold these truths to be self-evident, that I am created equal, that I too am  endowed . . . with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.  What does this mean? It means that from this day forward I will:

  • Give myself permission to write without guilt, even if it means closing my door or escaping to find a place to write on my own.
  • Let my family make their own mistakes without any interference from me.
  • Pursue projects and work that makes me feel fulfilled, even if it means that it cuts into the time I spend with my family.
  • Put myself first for at least one hour each day.
  • Insist that once in a while someone else must make a sacrifice, not just me.

Do I sound selfish? Perhaps, but I cannot continue to live my life feeling like I am only around to help others follow their dreams. I have every right to pursue dreams of my own. I am not doing anyone any favors, least of all my daughter, by allowing myself to be considered as a supporting player in my own life. So today I declare that it is my inalienable right to reach for the stars. If I crash and burn, at least I will look back on my life as one where I tried, I journeyed, and I never gave up on myself.

I intend to make it a life lived to the fullest.  I intend to find joy in every step of the journey. I want to look back and say, “I’m glad I lived the life I lived, and I am proud of who I am.”  If I can do that for myself, I can teach that to my daughter. If I can do that for myself, I will be the person I want to be.





27 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Alex Jones
    Jul 20, 2012 @ 13:53:09

    Good attitude to have, though modified if you are responsible for children or looking after animals/people.


    • Lisa Wields Words
      Jul 20, 2012 @ 13:56:35

      Oh, but I am responsible for a child and two dogs and a husband, and I’m still claiming this. I don’t mean that I will neglect them, but that I have the right to put myself first at least once every day, because otherwise I feel like nothing more than a prop in their lives. I refuse to believe that marriage and parenting mean that the individual woman doesn’t count as well.


  2. jacoba
    Jul 20, 2012 @ 13:56:50

    Well done Lisa


  3. thehealingwriter
    Jul 20, 2012 @ 14:06:41

    Good for you! You certainly deserve at least one hour a day.


  4. Stuart Nager
    Jul 20, 2012 @ 14:23:23

    Well written, by Sarah’s mom & the wife of the tech director. Who will she be now? 😉


  5. Andra Watkins
    Jul 20, 2012 @ 15:29:05

    An empowering and exciting position to take, Lisa. Bravo!


  6. Kathryn McCullough
    Jul 20, 2012 @ 16:44:56

    Hell, I agree with thehealingwriter, surely you deserve at least an hour. Good for you, my friend.!
    Enjoy your weekend.


  7. lisaspiral
    Jul 20, 2012 @ 16:53:02

    You GO girl! We associate selfishness with bad things, but everyone should be a little bit selfish. If you don’t put yourself first sometimes who’s going to be around to take care of the rest?


  8. thebestdigger
    Jul 20, 2012 @ 20:18:53

    That Bible you find no use for says if you don’t love yourself enough to prioritize yourself you cannot adequately love others. To thine own self be true, etc. First, take care of yourself so that you see clearly how to serve others. Not a doormat, not to be perpetually used, not martyr to your family. See yourself valuable enough to put yourself first or no one else will either. Best example: in a failing airliner put that oxygen mask over your face first or you’ll never get one on the child next to you. Think about it. You owe it to yourself and to us to put yourself first for yourself. Nothing selfish there. Nothing. What am I doing currently for my life? Chemo, chemo, chemo, followed by radiation, radiation, radiation. One step at a time, for me. All else is off my page. Focus, focus, focus. I am currently the center of my world, living my event in the midst of my life. Means that yes, I will sing this Sunday’s concert I’m tired enough to sit down. Living life normal with me in front of my own parade!


    • Lisa Wields Words
      Jul 21, 2012 @ 10:20:02

      It saddens me that you seem to think badly of me for my inability to completely believe all elements of the Bible. I can recognize the wisdom in its words, as well as the words of many other religious texts. I wish that I could have complete faith, but I don’t.

      I am so amazed by the strength and grace you show in your own personal battle. That is, truly, the time to put yourself first.


      • thebestdigger
        Jul 21, 2012 @ 11:05:09

        I don’t think badly of you. You were specific and definitive about how you see, or don’t see value in the Bible. As not poetry…which surprised me…coming from a gifted writer. And for saying it held nothing of value for you.I felt that those comments from you minimized the views of those who do find that book to be supportive. I am saying here that it says what you are saying about loving yourself, an absolute necessity, to be successful at what you have recognized as a kind of denial of yourself. I feel badly for you. But you are finding a better path to a healthy view of yourself. You are such a giving person that you leave yourself behind everyone else, never filling your own cup, and running on empty. Taking time for Lisa is paramount. Find your sustenance somewhere. I’m simply telling you where I find my strength, and so can you, whatever you believe. in what submission did you make your thoughts about the bible? Perhaps I should read it again. Never wanting to be unfair with you, I’m willing to rethink your comments, but I need to see them again.


        • Lisa Wields Words
          Jul 21, 2012 @ 13:03:42

          I honestly don’t remember what specifically I wrote about the Bible. Probably if we search we can find it. But generally, I do value it as a beautiful and insightful piece of literature. I think I probably was just arguing that it was written by men. Perhaps initially it was the word of God, that’s up for debate, but I think I was arguing that that word has been translated and written down by men. Great writers. Great poets, but still not filtered through human eyes. That’s usually what I argue. I do not diminish or dismiss people who can have total faith in the words. In some ways I envy them. But, I do think it is important that, when people use the words of the Bible to argue for a specific attitude or law, they need to take into account that times and translations have changed since the words were first written, and that those words were transcribed (at the very least) by fallible humans.

          This past year has truly been a journey for me into valuing myself more. It is a slow process, but I’m getting there.


  9. Debbie Tringale
    Jul 20, 2012 @ 20:57:39

    In al-anon we call this detaching with love. You can take care of yourself and still care for the people you love. It is not always easy, but with practice you’ll do it.


    • Lisa Wields Words
      Jul 21, 2012 @ 10:17:01

      I almost incorporated the quote, “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.” Isn’t that from al-anon?


      • Debbie Tringale
        Jul 26, 2012 @ 16:40:02

        Not that I am aware of but we do say “One day at a time” which reminds us that we cannot change yesterday, we don’t know what is going to happen tomorrow, we can only live in today.


  10. thepetalpusher
    Jul 21, 2012 @ 12:38:50

    You can’t take care of anyone else until you’ve taken care of yourself. You have the right for that time.


  11. CMSmith
    Jul 24, 2012 @ 12:07:34

    You don’t sound selfish, just like a woman who is throwing off the shackles of expectations and loving herself like she loves and cares for the others in her life.


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