So my brother and his wife were married back in May. She has two children from a previous marriage whom I genuinely feel are my niece and nephew, regardless of blood connection. I love these kids. I’d do anything for them. I will probably never have kids of my own (selfishness prevents me from wanting to breed since it’ll take up my Tumblr time), but I do want the future generation to, you know. Not screw up and to be very happy.
Yesterday, they had their first baby. I typically don’t like babies unless they’re sleeping and draped in roses or something artful like that, but when I got the first picture of the new tot in our lives, I lost it. I made the same noises once strictly reserved for cute kittens trying to jump over a relatively short amount of space and being unable to make it. And when I got the second picture of Landry Rose, my new niece, I suddenly felt very responsible and American, and since it was Election Day, I suppose that’s to be expected.
So here’s what I want for our future.
Happiness. Happiness in a healthy way that doesn’t harm others should never be frowned upon. In a country like this, where people are not only encouraged to vote but are publically shamed on Facebook for not doing so, we have a right to choose the best path for ourselves and our country. I believe this should be the same for happiness, whatever that means to you, as long as you do good and harm none.
Health. Recently, I’ve had some female problems get worse. These problems have dominated my life post-puberty, and since I haven’t had insurance since I was eighteen, I’ve never been able to get them fixed until some smart people encouraged me to go to Planned Parenthood. It was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had, one of honesty and kindness and peace, and when I asked the cashier what I owed, she said nothing at all, free services, unless I’d like to make a donation. I donated $15, all I could spare from that week’s check, and I thought that probably wouldn’t mean a thing to her, but her face lit up and she thanked me twice for it. I almost cried. Being healthy for an unhealthy person is a huge thing. It’s nice not to feel crippled by my problems every month, and it’s a huge weight off my shoulders knowing that I am being taken care of even though I owe far more in school loans than I could hope to make in a year at this point. I want this future generation to have that health security, and to know that even when times may get tough, they can still get the treatment they need, when they need it, and not have to go hungry to do so.
Prosperity. I know this sounds like I’m regurgitating our unalienable rights, but there’s a reason this shit’s in the Declaration of Independence. Everyone should have a right to a good education, regardless of where they came from, and once that happens, once you learn your trade, whatever that may be, prosperity is more likely to come to you, and with prosperity you can not only help yourselves, but help others. I have a wonderful family on my mother’s side, none of whom went to college, several of whom didn’t graduate high school, who are “shirts off my back” kind of people. What they lack in money, they make up in Level-99 altruism. This has trickled down to me. I may have a hard time asking for help when I need it, but if you need it, I’ll do anything. I’ll even get up at 4:30 in the morning to take you to the airport so I can be sure you get there safely. This is my spiritual prosperity, and I truly believe that you get what you give. It may take you a while to get it—years, decades—but it’ll come to you. I am pessimistic about so many things, but not this.
Comfort. Not just with their surroundings, but with themselves. It’s not an easy thing, being comfortable with yourself. We always want something we don’t have, or have something we don’t want, and self-hate is more and more prevalent as we move forward in this world. I have so many friends who start out sentences with, “I would be happier if,” and I want them not to stop saying it, but to stop feeling it. “I would be happier if I had a boyfriend,” “I would be happier if I was skinny,” “I would be happier if I had a better smile.” The hardest thing to do is to be comfortable in your own skin, and I want the future to find that comfort and hold onto it as tight as they can.
Love. Not to get cheesy, but there’s not enough love in this world, and I think we can all agree that having more would make everything a better place, one moment at a time.