“Did you know that they put an elastic around a bull’s balls to make it go crazy like that?”
When I was around ten years old, my older cousin said this to me at one of our regular Sunday dinners while the family watched television- a bull-riding competition, obviously.
Keep in mind that this was before you could pause live television. Over time, more and more family members joined my cousin and I around the couch.
Was he right?
Was there really an elastic tied around this bull’s testicles?
Every time we would get a shot from behind of the bull kicking his hind legs we would laugh thinking that we saw a string in that millisecond. For the record, I had strong feelings against animal cruelty as a young child, so I remember being upset thinking my cousin was right. That did not stop me from laughing however.
It was not just the kids that were entertained by this either. Aunts, Uncles, Parents, and even Grandparents pondered the validity of my cousin’s statement.
There would be no proof though unless one of us actually ‘saw it.’
“You have to see to believe.”
So we watched.
And we all laughed.
It is one of my favorite memories of those family dinners that we would have. I know this will sound cliché, but, it was simpler times back then.
Nowadays, any one of us would have just jumped on our phones and ‘Googled’ it. But I promise you it was a lot more fun the way things went down in my grandparent’s living room.
To this day I’m still not sure if he was right or not. I’m pretty sure however that you will find out the answer for me after we end class here today.
Just remember to delete your browser history!
Have you ever tried to support someone trying to kick an addiction? How about trying to help someone stay emotionally stable in the midst of a life crises? Forget about other people for a moment, maybe just keeping yourself balanced 24/7 is a challenge sometimes?
I do not have to tell you that none of these things are easy to do.
Life is hard.
Again, nothing secret about this.
Some days we are sad. Some days we are angry. Some days we are annoyed, worried, anxious, stressed. Somedays we might feel scared that life will never get better for us or the people we care about.
“Momma said there would be days like this.”
But then again, some days we are happy, and that is the goal. Right?
Wrong, not for everyone. For many living in this world, surviving another day is the goal, not happiness. I wish this was not the case, but unfortunately there is too much evidence to support this statement.
Tragedy strikes everywhere you look. And life for the majority gets harder year after year.
No wonder Hollywood has made a fortune making movies about a pending apocalypse. Maybe some people find hope in believing the end of days is near?
Telling you this does not make me a wise person. It is common sense.
The pursuit of happiness is not something to be ashamed of however. Just like many of you reading this, I think my well-being lies at the center of the universe also. It is how the human brain is wired, and there is nothing wrong with that. Something to do with ‘self-preservation,’ I think.
It is no secret that we are all at our best when we feel like we have purpose. And if that purpose is to be happy then you should fight for it with all your might. There is no judgement here. I just want you to be reminded that for some out there, survival is the goal, so give yourself a break and try to be grateful for being alive today.
The truth is that trying to stay happy in today’s world, just like an addict trying to kick the habit, is like riding a bull. Life will kick you around. Punish you. Test you. It will make you hold on while you wait for it to get tired and give up before you do. Unfortunately, the bull always wins; we all eventually fall off.
The real question is; will you get back on?
My hope is that you will, because there is no way to ‘Google’ what the future holds. A miracle may be waiting for you right around the corner.
Which reminds me. Did you know that in some religions that the word ‘Apocalypse’ represents an ‘awakening period’ for humanity? This is quite different than Hollywood’s portrayal of it, don’t you think?
Which one will be correct?
Only time will tell.
Regardless of which one wins out, it promises to be quit the show. So, gather your friends, and sit up close. You won’t want to miss it.
Trust me, I’ll be right there on the couch watching things unfold with you; always asking questions, trying to be patient, and reminding myself to have faith even in the darkest of times.
P.S. Some of us just trying to survive this ride called life wear a mask to hide our true selves from the world. This mask may be the only thing that makes you feel safe. Well, for those like me out there, one day I hope you dare to listen to your inner child and “Take Off The Mask…for…You Could Be Someone’s Hero.”
"We Took What We Had And Ripped It Apart."- Hungry Hearts by Bruce Springsteen
Question Of The Day:
Is it more important to be ‘happy’ or ‘content’- Is There A Difference?
Teacher’s Note: Our FaceBook page ‘Social Recovery 101’ now has 4,033 Followers (+16%) and 64 Page Shares (+3%). Remember, Y-O-U will change the future as U are more powerful than U realize!