I was driving home from a Girl Scout meeting yesterday, my own three girls crammed into the backseat, when this song came on:
I like this song. It’s catchy. It’s ‘got a funky beat you can dance to’. My girls started bopping all over what limited space they had in the backseat. And it has a positive message. If we don’t treat each day as a gift, we will miss out on the opportunity simply breathing affords us.
However . . .
I can’t help but think that such messages as this, broad sweeping generalizations about life spoken in hyperbole, do us a disservice.
Everyday can’t possibly be the best of your life. Life, the world, doesn’t work like that. There are ebbs and flows, ups and downs.
As someone who’s had a fair share of emotional downs, such attitudes can be caustic.
Today wasn’t the best day of my life. What’s wrong with me? Why can’t I rise above and rejoice?
Much more realistic and empowering would be to see the good in each day, but not expect it all to be good. Chalk up a bad day to just that – a sucky day that’s now done with and can be put away. Looking for the next good day is a good idea, but to expect that every day will be one sets us all up for failure.
I know I’m not waxing optimistic here, but for people whose minds and chemicals work against them, it’s not a matter of the glass and how full it is. All the good vibes in the world can’t spontaneously spout water. We can certainly look for ways to fill the glass, but thinking it will always miraculously be full on its own is a sure way to disappointment.