I think that life is a series of choices. Some of them are good and bring you much happiness. Other ones are horrible and bring you misery. Each choice leads you to another choice. Sometimes we choose to hide parts of ourselves because we are afraid of what others will think. Sometimes we choose to reveal too much too soon.
Sometimes you do not make the choice, your circumstances really are beyond your control. Most of those times it is because you are in a place where someone else has power over you. Either you put yourself there by your choices, or you were put there by fate. Sometimes you choose to stay in a situation that is bad because you are afraid of what else is out there.
I think that responsibility is accepting the consequences for the choices you make, no matter how dire. If you choose to lie, cheat and steal, there is a very high probability it will come back to blow up in your face some day. Perhaps it will be on the day you have gotten into the running to be president of the United States. Or perhaps you will live your whole life as if you hadn't and never know the consequences of your actions.
Some of the time, when someone feels that their choices have brought them to a place they do not want to be, they run away or turn to addictions to numb the pain. Other times they simply complain about how horrible their life is and how they would wish for any other. Still other times, they patiently wait for the opportunity to change their circumstances for the better. But most of the time we are too busy being afraid of what will happen if we do what is necessary to change our fate.
All of my life I have been a coward. I was too afraid to tell someone I wanted to date him when I was young. I was too afraid to tell another that I did not want to date him. I was too afraid to tell my father that I was leaving despite what he said because I was over the age of eighteen and there was nothing he could do to stop me. I was too afraid of losing my ex to tell him that it was not okay with me for him to sleep with his ex-girlfriend. I was too afraid of being alone to leave him before I fell in love with him. I was too afraid of being friendless to guard my heart and I put myself out there to people I never should have trusted. I am still afraid. I am afraid that no one will understand if I tell them the truth about me. I am afraid that people will look at me weird, that they will judge me. I am friendless because I am too afraid. Afraid to be an imposition to those who would be my friends. Afraid to approach those I would have be mine. Afraid to ask for help, even when I need it. Afraid to be myself lest others think me weird.
Sometimes I dream of being courageous. I dream of telling someone off when they are rude to me. Someone who is not family, that is. I dream of risking my life to save another. I dream of walking into a room with confidence, walking right up to a guy I like and asking him out. I dream of driving a motorcycle or going waterskiing or real skiing or something else that is unbelievably dangerous just for fun. I dream of talking to people (even strangers) with the ease my ex does. The only way I can hold the attention of a group of people is if I am telling a joke and I only know a few that I tell well enough.
I have done one courageous thing in my life. I left my ex, even though it meant struggling. Even though it meant living a much more meager lifestyle than I had been used to. Even though it meant that I would have to scrape by for a time. Even though it meant having to rely on others some of the time instead of being independent right away because children are so expensive.
My life has been a series of choices. The choices I made as a child were few because I had little choice over my life at the time. Still, I chose to stay with my parents when my uncle offered to take me in at the age of sixteen. If I had made the choice to leave and live with them, how different would my life be? Would I have different values? Would I even be here in this town right now?
I have always thought that there has to be a purpose for everyone. The more we run away from our purpose by the choices we make, the less happy we are. The more choices we make that drive us towards our purpose, the happier we are. I cannot figure out what my purpose is. Part of me thinks that it is to raise three amazing daughters who will then go out into the world and do great things for the benefit of all mankind. Another part of me thinks that my purpose is to write a novel that in turn will change a persons life in a profound way. Another part of me thinks that it is my purpose to paint a masterpiece that will make people stop in their tracks.