challenges, part 1.

There are two important Facebook challenges making the rounds right now. Typically, Facebook is about self-indulgent Me-ism, but sometimes it comes up with something helpful to the world, though it stays true to itself and always does it in a very Me-ism kind of way. Because that's what social media is all about, really: Look! Look at MEEEEEEEEE!!!!!

I'm not judging. First off, I'm all over social media with my own Look at MEEEEE!!!! stuff, and second, I think, essentially, people never really grow up and this is why social media is so alluring to humanity--inside, we are all clingy, egoic children desperate for mommy to give in to all our tantrums and if we just scream loud enough, she will. Some of us may be 2 year olds who like to bite others on the face when we get mad at them. Some are 3 who pinch, some 4 who use manipulation tactics like a boss. But we're all kids. (I watch myself and the adults I work with in meetings and think: man, if we were in my 2nd grade class on the floor for a story right now, I'd have to stop 20 times to give somebody A LOOK, and 3/4 of the time I'd be giving the LOOK to myself.) Some people (like Jesus and Dr. King and Ghandi) somehow manage to grow their egos all the way into young adulthood, and so for all of history humans admire them and quote them and think: Man! How did they have such patience and goodness to DO all that?? as we suck our thumbs and get mad at that other kid over there for being so poopy head.

(My friend P has a wonderful theory about social media. She thinks the reason there is so much poison there is because humanity is using social media as one big cosmic cleanse; we're getting rid of all our spiritual toxins, and social media is our collective detox method. I love that.)

So on to the Facebook challenges: one is called something like 5 Good Things about Today. My sweet, kind, positive friend J challenged me to it yesterday. 'Cause I ain't gonna lie, Internet: I had a challenging, rough week last week. I vented my spleen about it on Facebook (a good Internet area to vent a spleen). One too many meetings with one too many pieces of stress crap overwhelming information that worried my heart and raised my blood pressure a lot.

So it's good to sit back and come up with a handful of reasons to be happy, in spite of what the world can do to your spirit. Here are my 5 Good Things from Today (okay, Yesterday, since I just woke up) and I challenge YOU to think of 5 good things from your yesterday. Or do it as you go to bed tonight:

1-I had this Challenging Kid last year. Let's call her Challenging Kid, since that's what she was. Challenging Kid has come into my classroom EVERY morning this year to give me a hug. I don't know why, because I used to pull CK out in the hall, like, multiple times a day to light a fire under her little challenging butt. I saw her heart, I saw it. It was kind and sweet and good. But it was hiding under a lot of challenging crap. I worried all the time I was too mean to her. And lands, readers! CK had a nasty little at. i. TUDE. At any rate, she now gives me a daily hug and yesterday she brought me a little notebook...because she remembered I told them last year I keep little notebooks in my purse to jot story ideas down or make notes of things I overhear or see in case I want to use them later.

This about makes my heart burst with blessings. So, so blessed to know people do see that you love them, even if you want to cream their behinds multiple times per day.

2-I came home yesterday to find an envelope of money with this note from my husband: Spend this on yourself. NOT school supplies. You deserve it. There's another CK-type person whose ass I sometimes would like to cream. And then he goes and does this. And now I'm going to spend some of my money on a surprise for him. After I buy myself a new purse and some shoes.

3-Miss M was so sweet and pleasant last night. She did not detail how annoying I am to her. No! not once. We enjoyed pizza for dinner, and there may have been a pint of Ben & Jerry's Chunky Monkey ice cream involved. And that's a good way to end a challenging work week.

4-I discovered The Red Band Society, a new tv show. It's being made entirely in Atlanta. Atlanta is a land of stories and good places to tell them. Also, I have a dear friend with family being employed by this show, and so I was excited to see how it turned out. I watched the pilot yesterday and it made me cry and smile at the end. And that's GOOD. It's about heart and sticking together, two things that mean a lot to me. Sending it blessings that it does well.

5-I'm on a 3 day hiatus. I am not being targeted by ISIS. I am healthy and well, all my extremities function. I have access to clean water and good (expensive, but good) healthcare. I have a house in a neighborhood that doesn't have drive by shootings. I live in a country where, in theory, my thoughts are valued. I can go anywhere I want in this country or the world (I have a driver's license and a passport). I don't have to wear a burqa. I have a support system of family and friends surrounding me with love. I am blessed in ways some people are not.

I'm going to post the next challenge tomorrow because (1) if I did it right now, you'd be reading for another ten hours and (2) if I did it right now this blog entry would stretch to infinity. Oh, and (3) my kid is demanding breakfast. God help the planet if that doesn't happen for her.

And you have a challenge! Start making your list. Type it, write it, paint it, go!

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