I hate whiners. The incessant chorus of complaining drives me nuts on so many levels. First of all, what’s the point in complaining? Don’t waste your time or mine. Get out there and do something to make things different, or suck it up. Second of all, what do we really have to complain about? Do we not live in a country with an obesity problem while 2/3 of the world is malnourished? People in Greece are still storing their TP in the trash bin to preserve the country’s fragile sanitation system, while I have fresh, clean water that comes out of my faucet on demand – hot or cold. I drive on paved roads, organized with traffic signals and colored stripes to keep me safe and well directed. I shop at grocery stores that are stocked to the rafters with a wide variety of tasty food, offered at reasonable prices. I put my clothes into a machine that cleans them for me and call it “housework.” Sure, illness, sickness, and the stupidity of our fellow humans can befall any of us at any time, making us uncomfortable, inconvenienced, or impoverished, but what does a short temper, and high pitched nasal vocalizing do to correct that? Nothing. So, please, save it.
I feel like I’ve earned my callous indifference, at least to some degree. I can handle pain – I birthed two kids naturally, with none of the crazed screaming of the lady across the hall to “GET IT OUT! GET IT OUT!” I hope Dad got that on video so Junior can someday enjoy the warmth of his welcome. I’ve worked hard – I took on crazy, exhausting challenges like commuting 3 hours each way to school while working the other four days a week with my daughter in my office. I’ve lived on nothing – I even got stuck on an island with no money for a week and had to subsist in a hostel, eating beans and fake peanut butter while sharing a room of bunk beds with insane homeless people. And that’s just a few examples of the stupid binds my “never say die” attitude has gotten me into. I know there are much harsher adversities out there for humans to endure, but I do figure I’ve been uncomfortable, inconvenienced, and impoverished enough to have empathy, if not compassion, for most of the whining I hear around me. But even in the midst of those experiences, I forced myself to keep it together, to make the best of it, to assume there was something better for me on the other side. I really tried not to whine.
Whining never got me anywhere, and I try not to let it get anyone else anywhere, either. My lousy attitude towards whiners has led me into quite another predicament, these last couple months. I am, at this very moment, torn between my desire to vocalize all my discomforts and the internal self-loathing that such a vocalization causes. Instead of rallying against the nausea, fatigue, and mood imbalances of these 14 weeks of pregnancy, I have found myself, instead, surrendering to them. I’ve spent more time languishing on the couch with a pile of crackers than loading up the machine so it can clean my clothes for me. I’ve been impatient with my two sweet girls, criticizing instead of nurturing them, when they fail to meet my expectations for picking up after themselves and getting their homework done. I’ve broken every rule of eating well, and living well (except for not drinking – which I would truly love to do)! I am such a pathetic bundle of WHINER!
And really – there are so many people around me who would give anything to have two such healthy and beautiful daughters. I pursue this greedy desire for a bigger family, get pregnant with ease, and then have the audacity to whine about the symptoms of pregnancy? Don’t think for a moment that I don’t realize what a horrible human being I am. I have such a deep respect for this process; I get to co-create with God! I feel such an intense love for this little person I’m cooking up. I have such high hopes for my friends and acquaintances who want to have a family and struggle to make it happen. But, at the moment, I just needed to complain a little. The fact of the matter is, and has been for weeks, I just don’t feel very good. And I hate it when I let that get the best of me.
For a long time I have kept silent, I have been quiet and held myself back. Isaiah 42:14
(I refrained from adding the next verse, but you may get a laugh if you look it up.)