Last week was my birthday week. I decided to dedicate the entire week to my birthday because the week as a whole was more exciting than my actual birthday. I woke up sick on the day of my birth, you see. Same as happened last year. I guess my body just can’t handle the anticipation of growing even older and completely breaks down.
So last week, a couple exciting things happened.
#1 We bought a car. His name is Tony Stark.
Because his back-up camera, navi system, heated seats, and bluetooth are as technologically advanced as we can imagine at this point in our cheapskate lives. We will never own a brand new car–we don’t believe in it–so I suppose we are destined to experience ground transportation technology 10 years after the fact. I’m okay with that, since it means we can take a monthly car payment and put it towards air transportation.
#2 We went to a Journey concert
And I wasn’t even a little excited for it. I know a total of 3 Journey songs, and I like them, but I most definitely wouldn’t have gone if it hadn’t been free (thanks to Qualtrics). However, the lead singer was AWESOME! A 5’4″, 50 year-old Filipino guy jumping and running around the stage while belting out some classic rock songs for a couple hours–it made for a fun night.
#3 Lunch at Tucano’s with the husband
No pictures. We were way too busy eating our body weight in cholesterol.
#4 Popping some Martinelli’s with coworkers at work
#5 Spending Saturday with the family to celebrate my nephew’s birthday and my birthday
#6 A trip to the animal shelter with my niece, including a fortuitous sighting of this inspiringly-indolent cat. I have an obsession with both miniature animals and oversized animals. Fat cats are especially beloved because they can’t do what most cats do–run away when you want to cuddle them. This picture doesn’t do the cat’s stomach justice. She was totally trying to look skinny for the picture. For all I know, she’s doing duck lips, too.
#7 Eating at Thai Siam with the family for my birthday.
I got Panang curry. I love Thai food. So much.
I also love my family.
Life is such a happy place! I’m grateful for another year to live and appreciate what this world has to offer. In that vein, recently I’ve been trying harder not to compare myself to others, and not to compare my life to the lives I see others portraying via social media. It ain’t easy. We see all the best of people’s lives, and it’s difficult not to assume that those things alone should make up life. But when I sit back and think of my life–all the mundane things that make up the majority of it–I feel ashamed that I would envy someone else’s situation or that I would grudge them wonderful experiences. I have had and continue to have so so many.
May I plead with us not to be hurt—and certainly not to feel envious—when good fortune comes to another person? We are not diminished when someone else is added upon. We are not in a race against each other to see who is the wealthiest or the most talented or the most beautiful or even the most blessed. The race we are really in is the race against sin, and surely envy is one of the most universal of those. Furthermore, envy is a mistake that just keeps on giving. Obviously we suffer a little when some misfortune befalls us, but envy requires us to suffer all good fortune that befalls everyone we know! So lesson number one from the Lord’s vineyard: coveting, pouting, or tearing others down does not elevate your standing, nor does demeaning someone else improve your self-image. So be kind, and be grateful that God is kind. It is a happy way to live. Jeffrey R. Holland, Laborers in the Vineyard