September 11, 2009.
I’m currently reading a Chicken Soup for the Soul edition for moms, which also happens to be a recipe book. And, as I came across one of the stories, a line simply stuck to my mind: “In life, you always have a choice. You either become bitter or better.”
Of course, I’d prefer to become better at any given day. Yet, sad to say, I admit that I can’t help but give in to bitterness at times. As I see my mother lay in bed, devoid of strength and sometimes even sanity and hope because of cancer, I can’t help but wail to God. Why her, of all people? Why my own mother who has always been a pillar of strength to me? Why her who knew nothing but to give me everything that I need without expecting anything in return? Why her who took care of me as well as my husband and daughters, especially in times of need?
I wonder if it’s God’s way to spite a family member who has theorized that all persons who are involved in money-lending business acquire cancer as punishment for capitalizing on other people’s needs. I find that theory rather sick, really. As far as I know, my mother never lent anyone money at an interest, and in fact, to this day, many of our neighbors still owe her some money since she sold goods on installment basis and her clients won’t pay unless they are asked to do so. Moreover, cancer can easily happen to anyone according to research studies.
I wonder if it’s God’s way to remind me that though I love her so much, I ought to love my own family more, and God above all. My marriage had been in a rut–in and out–these past few months. What used to be a very agreeable relationship between me and my parents-in-law, is now filled with apathy. People whom I consider my very close friends seem suddenly too busy to stop and say ‘hello.’
I’ve always thought of myself as a person who can volley problems without a cinch. Yet, here I am, unable to move forward, it seems. There would be times when my resolution to forgive and forget’s so strong, and yet there were also times when all I could think of is how I’d make the people who had wronged me or anyone in my family taste my wrath.
Bitter or better.
Nah, I’d rather be better. Be a better follower of Christ, wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, and so on…
Better because it’s not worth wasting my time on things and people that I cannot change. Better because they’re not worth a line on my face–I’d like to grow old gracefully, thank you. Better because I’m still young and will surely continue to face quite a number of difficulties in life, so I’ll surely need the vigor and youthfulness to survive the coming years. Better because that’s just how Christians are supposed to be, and I do not want to shame the name–not anymore, please!