TMI Friday – On being selfish
A few months ago my mother made the off-handed comment that part of the reason my sister and I were fighting was due to our both being a little on the selfish side. That, and we’re both stubborn.
This notion of being selfish weighed heavy on my mind for quite some time. I meant to write about it a while back, but obviously I was too wrapped up in myself to find time to write about it. Then last Saturday as I am thinking about my plans for the day – pedicure, lunch with ED, lay by the pool with the girls, go to a movie (“Get me to the Greek,” HILARIOUSLY stupid! Totally recommend it.) – the though of being selfish crossed my mind again.
As a point of reference, my mother has spent her life in service. She is a full-time nurse, she serves religious callings for the LDS church, she is in a cooking club (which is the polar opposite of my cooking club), and on the weekends she is always watching one or more of her grandchildren. She has countless gift certificates to get massages or visit the spa but she just can’t seem to find the time because she is too busy taking care of everyone else.
I, on the other hand, would totally use those spa gift cards because I only have myself to take care of.
Well, I also take care of my cat.
Totally selfish, right?
Only I’m not.
Not really anyway.
The conclusion I have come to is this: At this phase in my life my priorities involve bettering myself through school, working hard in a career I love, spending time with building my relationships with friends, family, and of course my significant other, ED. It is not that I am selfish, I have made a conscious decision to be where I am.
Having grown up in the Mormon religion I know that, especially as a woman, spending too much time taking care of yourself when you could be taking care of others is considered a selfish thing to do. Your life should be all about service, not about discovering your own dreams and ambitions. It wasn’t until I reached the age of 25 that I finally made the decision to claim independence and find out what I was really made of.
Almost five years later, I do not regret my decision.
One day my priorities will be different. One day my priorities might involve the most selfless act of all – parenthood! One day it might involve feeding starving kids in Africa or actually being active in charitable groups instead of just attending their events. Who knows! One day it might involve the Peace Corp, rescuing stray kittens, baking cookies for the homeless and mowing my elderly neighbors lawn.
But until then, this is my life and I am pretty damn okay with it.