Skip to content

Serenity

May 22, 2012

Self, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.

I had to change “God” to “Self.” As the years go by I am getting more and more intolerant of this default belief that there is a fucking God. If there is a God, then why won’t God stop biting my fucking tit already? Speaking of religion, occasionally when I have time I will volunteer at my daughter’s school. First thing in the morning is usually best. Unfortunately that time is exactly when all the kiddies are being directed to say the Pledge of Allegiance. I hate that fucking Pledge. It is fascist as hell, not to mention that damn “Under God” part. Normally because of where I sit (they have a little desk in the corner for volunteers, social workers, etc.) I can sit during the Pledge while the rest of the school staff is standing and no one is the wiser. But during the last time I was there, this older than ancient Health Tech (because the cheap ass school district whose superintendent makes more money than like twelve teachers combined no longer will pay for nurses, as in a real nurse, but only a clerk who had CPR and passed the all day Saturday course on handing out and inventorying icepacks. Any ailment that will not be soothed by an icepack, mom or dad has to be called and mom or dad has to come up to the school and access the child, including when a broken bone is suspected. So this older than ancient health tech turns to me, even though technically she should be facing Old Glory awaiting that orgasmic moment of “and justice for ALL,” (as if) and motions me to stand up.

I did stand up. At first I wasn’t but over the years I have rebelled and have successfully won now, let me count, zero times. I am a fucking loser when it comes to winning at rebelling. The status quo wins and I lose, every fucking time.

As I noted about the month of April, it was long and angry. May is shaping up as a contender.

I cannot keep living this angry, and I have been thinking about it to the point that stupid mantra up there at the top of this post popped in my head. I never actually studied the words because I know how it is a joke for people who criticize Alcoholic Anonymous and other 12-step programs. And truthfully, I am one of those people as well. Anything that requires reciting, “fake it until you make it,” and all that other shit that masks reality I take issue with. But my feral and wild thoughts are going to put me in an early grave, and unlike some people I have met in my life I am not interested in an early grave. I WANT TO LIVE! Just an aside, I do believe most Christians have a death wish and the irony is, at least right now in our current political climate, Christians insult Muslims for having a death wish. Can the logic be any more stupid?

Studying the words now, I do believe I have to chant the first line over and over until it sinks in. I don’t need the second line so much because I have never lacked courage when it comes to tackling things that I have wanted to change. Actually, experiencing the second line has helped me with the third line. However, knowing the differences to what I can and cannot change just pisses me off more and leads me back to needing the serenity to accept the things that I cannot change. That is the hardest and most bitterest inducing fact of life, –knowing that you cannot do one damn thing to change it. Not knowing it from not having the courage, but knowing it from working on it and working on it and working on and nothing changes.

13 Comments leave one →
  1. May 22, 2012 7:02 pm

    Classic Kitty Glendower! Thank you for this. It came at the exact right time for me my Sister – believe that!

  2. la redactora permalink
    May 23, 2012 6:32 pm

    I have heard that some people like the idea of something outside of themselves, for AA purposes, it makes them feel less responsible. But I like it much more with your revision. I am not there yet on 1, 2, or 3.

    So this older than ancient health tech turns to me, even though technically she should be facing Old Glory awaiting that orgasmic moment of “and justice for ALL,” (as if) and motions me to stand up.

    I did stand up. At first I wasn’t but over the years I have rebelled and have successfully won now, let me count, zero times. I am a fucking loser when it comes to winning at rebelling. The status quo wins and I lose, every fucking time.

    LOL because it is true, and sad. It is awful, but in my mind I call people like that “pledge Nazis.” They really get into it, and it is all just lying propaganda and Cold War conformity. Even at university, a professor I had liked to sneer about people who wanted to take out the retrofitted “god” from the pledge: “It is freedom of religion, not freedom from religion.”

    • May 23, 2012 9:17 pm

      That’s interesting to know about alcoholics. I have felt like “God” has been “Self” for some time now. I think I first start thinking about it seriously when I would hear people talk about how they prayed about something and then feel good with the conclusion they have reached (George Bush used to do this). It is a journey inward. No God, just inner dialogue. For some reason people think you cannot have a meaningful relationship with yourself. I suppose that is why I partly buy into the possibility of Freud’s Id, Ego, and Superego, and Maslow’s Self-Actualization theory.

    • la redactora permalink
      May 23, 2012 9:49 pm

      What are you saying really explains some of the things people say they experience via “prayer.” And of course, that the feeling/dialogue has come from “god” gives it an authority it would not otherwise have.

    • May 24, 2012 6:39 am

      I think God is convenient, especially when the journey inward only goes so far to rationalize a decision that one wanted to make anyway and did not have the courage to admit that they so readily reached such a decision (especially if it does not feel “morally” right). Or a decision that society in general would not readily tolerate if it did not appear that there had been some labor put into the decision. Of course the decision is just the one that she/he wanted to reach anyway, such as going to war. Actually, I don’t know if I can even say there was a journey inward, just enough “Praying” to get to justification and rationalization, a means to mitigate the potential guilt. “I prayed on it! Therefore, when 100,000 people are dead I don’t have to feel bad because it was God’s decision, not mine. It had nothing to do with the vigor and zeal that my humanly self used to persuade or fabricate, it was all GOD! By the way, I am such a good person for having God in my life.”

    • May 24, 2012 10:14 am

      What are you saying really explains some of the things people say they experience via “prayer.” And of course, that the feeling/dialogue has come from “god” gives it an authority it would not otherwise have.

      Looking at the word authority as meaning credible vs. having enforcing power is somewhat interesting, although I am in a hazy fog with that thought and grasping. Grasping not out of desperation as the cliché “grasping for straws” implies but grasping because I feel/sense/know there is something there and I just cannot see it right now.
      Some immediate thoughts, the whole bootstraps and personal responsibility and then crediting and/or blaming God. There is a paradox, a contradiction, something especially with people who resort to this rhetoric, i.e. Conservatives.
      Are we afraid to be confident (having an authority) with our own decisions/conclusions or do we need a buffer (GOD) in case those decisions go wrong, or even go right?

    • la redactora permalink
      May 24, 2012 11:24 am

      Well I was thinking it as, the credibility is only there because its source has authority. Authority, in this case of God (the ultimate authority in a hierarchical world-view) bestows credibility.

      I never noticed that paradox in certain brands of conservative thinking before. Yes, they should make up their minds. I knew someone once who was sure that Jesus was guiding his every move. He never yammered on too much about personal responsibility, though.

      Are we afraid to be confident (having an authority) with our own decisions/conclusions or do we need a buffer (GOD) in case those decisions go wrong, or even go right?

      . Yes, that is probably it.

  3. la redactora permalink
    May 23, 2012 9:53 pm

    For some reason people think you cannot have a meaningful relationship with yourself.

    In something like Christianity, it would be insufficiently humble. Though I really can’t see anyone but the most extreme, US-style extroverts buying fully into that idea.

    • May 24, 2012 6:42 am

      I don’t understand your comment about the extroverts, maybe if you would like to elaborate.

    • la redactora permalink
      May 24, 2012 6:59 am

      Well, the US part is that there is a stereotype that people from the US are culturally extraverts, and more so than others. The rest of it is just that I cannot see anyone but the complete opposite of an introvert (who are supposed to be all about their own inner lives*) thinking that they cannot have meaningful relationships with themselves.

      Does that make sense?

      *Not that extraverts can’t have inner lives, I’m just going with the “rule.”

  4. June 12, 2012 1:31 pm

    Without comment, I recommend “A Guide to the Good Life: The Ancient Art of Stoic Joy” by William B. Irvine.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: