Once upon a time, a child was born. She was born not into a life of wealth and leisure, but into poverty (but not dirt, because her mother was obsessed with cleanliness).
As this girl grew she began to notice that the world was not fair, and sometimes good people (like her family) were stuck in bad circumstances. While some people (friends and neighbors) had an abundance of food and drink, her family had to scrimp and save just to put a few crumbs on the table (a fact that the girl worked hard to hide from those same friends and neighbors).
But she was a naturally happy child, so she smiled on.
Until she hit her teen years with all its angst and trials. By this time, the girl’s happiness was overshadowed by the worldview that no matter how hard she worked, how much she studied, or how far she travelled, she was destined to live a life of misery and worry. There would be no escape from the life she was born into.
The story could have ended there, this girl could have become a depressed, miserable adult–but where would be the fun in that! Instead, the girl continued to mature, she met new people, and saw more of the world. She learned that she did have options, that life was made up of a series of choices that either sent her skipping merrily along the path to happiness, or sucked her off the path into the pit of despair.
Life became even brighter when she realized that every skip down the happy path led her further and further from that looming pit of despair. All she had to do was only make good choices, and stay away from the bad ones. (Sounds simple, doesn’t it?)
To keep making the good choices, the girl decided that she needed to look at every aspect of her life. She wanted to uncover every hidden danger to her happiness, every rock or pothole that might trip her as she skipped along lightheartedly.
What she found amazed her. She discovered that it wasn’t just about choices of action, but also of focus. She was surprised to discover that what she read and watched affected her more deeply than she had ever realized. Horror filled her with a deep, breath-stealing fear that caused her to lay awake at night in terror of the unknown. Anxiety-filled drama depressed her and stole away her desire to skip along the happy path, causing her to instead be sucked closer and closer to that oh-so-ominous pit. Humor and comedy, on the other hand, uplifted her spirit and lightened her heart.
So like Luke Skywalker, she decided to turn away from the dark side.
So if you read any books written by this girl (have you guessed that the girl is me?), don’t expect heavy drama, horror, or angst. She is doing her best to live on the light side. As far away from that old pit as she can get.
It is all about choices.