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Whose side are you on?

In the middle of a heated argument with someone, I'll sometimes resort to asking, "But, whose side are you on, anyways?!" And, the resounding response is, "Yours, always." I believe that. When the people who love me tell me things I don't want to hear, I believe that even their criticism is in service to their intention to look out for my best interests.

So, why is it so hard to give the same benefit of the doubt to God and all of the obstacles, or learning opportunities, the universe puts in front of me as constructive criticism to reexamine the path I'm on?

Imagine how empowering it would be if I could approach every space, no matter how restricted it is to people who look like me, as mine to claim solely with the conviction that the world and every person, energy, and circumstance within it is on MY side. If only as a self-fulfilling prophecy, I have noticed the difference both internally and in terms of tangible outcomes when I walk around angry at all of the flawed systems in which we live, along with the long list of people that are surely throwing darts at my face in their dark basements somewhere (*shudders*, a storyteller's imagination knows no bounds).

To my knowledge (and please correct me), there is no high school club, social media channel, or underground cult out to get me or my happiness. If I ever decide to go into politics, I will retract this assumption immediately.

Oh, how exciting it is to think that every rejection is just from an actor paid by a higher power to turn me down so I can aim for something better. What if everyone is just a part of the plan? Maya Angelou said in an interview once, "Every age I’ve been grateful…Get up in the morning: Thank you, Lord. Thank you for this day. Thank you for the light coming through the window. Thank you that I’m breathing. Thank you for everything. Thank you for the phone call that told me I had the job. Thank you for the phone call that told I’m not wanted anymore. Thank you because I know you have something better for me lined up… Thank you. Because I know something better is on the road for me. You fired me? Good on you. And very good on me. Cause what I’m going to get you would long for.”

I think I am the only one is truly not on my side. I stand in my way all the time. But, everything outside of myself is designed for me to succeed. I think the world holds different meaning when I truly believe this - not because inequity and barriers suddenly stop existing, but because they challenge me to envision and relentlessly work toward a future where they don't. I cannot put my efforts into something without first believing it's possible. I have worked 80 hours a week, or gone 40 hours straight without sleep, or written 30 page research papers in 3 days, or (hardest of all) stuffed my damn duvet inside its cover after every wash, but I have never known any task more difficult than that of convincing myself that something can exist from nothing.

But, it is not nothing, is it? It is me. It is you. It is all the love and light in all the things. All rooting for us, you and I together. Surely something is not so out of reach as all that.

If you are reading this, thank you for being on my side, always.

Photo by Ron Lach from Pexels