“After all, tomorrow is another day.”
We all know where this quote is from, don’t we? It’s from the novel turned cinematic classic Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell.
And yet, the quote itself has a purpose beyond a book quote. It is an important reminder that tomorrow is just around the corner. We can’t prevent it from coming and all we can do is try our best to make it through
Don’t worry about tomorrow, everyone says. Today is difficult enough for most of us and worrying about what may happen can sap our energy, strength, and joy in living.
However, we can’t help but worry. Worry is sadly a foundation of human nature and one that we all endure. We worry if our families are getting enough food, if our friends need us, and how we can meet the requests of those who want our help.
I have a perpetual calendar and one of my favorite quotes on it is “Worry is like a rocking chair. It keeps you occupied but doesn’t get you anywhere.” I say this to people frequently and it always makes them laugh. And they all agree.
Then the person ignores the quote and continues worrying.
I’m not saying I never worry. I have PTSD, anxiety, and depression, and worrying is second nature when my symptoms are fierce. But I try to live my life in such a way that I do not become frightened of what tomorrow may bring.
That is, after all, what worry does to us. It makes us unable to appreciate our life now because we are anxiously awaiting tomorrow. And we’re convinced in the middle of it that tomorrow will always be worse than today.
We know this isn’t the case. Tomorrow is often better than today. I’ve had bad days followed by good days, and vice versa. And having that hope that tomorrow will be an improvement can override our worries and get us through the bad days.
But the worry itself is debilitating. And learning to embrace each day instead is one of the most difficult things we as humans must do.
And we must learn how to embrace the new day. It makes life more enjoyable to embrace instead of worry. But we are fools, and slow to learn, and so we worry.
And the cycle is repeated endlessly until worry is second nature, and the next day is something to be afraid of. But we have time to change it. Time to learn and grow and give up on worrying over things we cannot control.
After all, tomorrow is another day.
I’m not sure why the people who work with my mom thought this would be an interesting topic to write about. But, the rules of the Journal Jar stipulate the topic drawn at random must be written, so here goes.
Grocery shopping. It can be awful. When you go to the store and it’s payday, and it’s so crowded you have to wait for someone to walk by so you can continue on the aisle, I never want to go again. Sadly, it is a necessity and one that we all must do.
Though I do not find grocery shopping fun, I do find it entertaining if I am not stressed myself. It’s an excellent way to study human nature and how people react to mildly stressful situations.
Grocery shopping for most of us is a mindless activity that doesn’t require much brainpower. We use our lists and put the items on it in our cart, and then we go to the front of the story and check out, chatting with the cashier about the weather, how our day is, etc. See? I’ve completed hundreds of grocery shopping trips like the one I just mentioned.
However, I’ve also completed the other kind. Where money is so tight you have a calculator out and as many coupons as a store will let you use, the bare minimum of items on your list. When that shopping trip happens, a simple requirement of living can turn into a delicate balancing act.
Those of us who live on strict and tight budgets do not generally look forward to shopping. Prices can vary widely and we always worry we will not have enough money to afford what we need to buy. There is no room for “fun” groceries on strict budgets, and so we go without. We eat peanut butter and jelly, grilled cheese, and tons of macaroni and cheese. Cheap meals without any frills, and without any nutritional value.
But we often have no choice. Hopefully, for most of us, it is only temporary. But millions of people across the world struggle to find food every day and don’t always know where their next meal is coming from. I’ve never had that struggle in my life, and I am grateful for it. But we must do what we can to help those in need, and make sure they have affordable food options, though I cannot claim to know how to begin. For now, I donate food to local food banks and other food drives.
And I hope and pray for the day that we won’t need these options at all.
A little over sixteen years ago, I signed up to join the United States Army. I had barely turned seventeen and I was excited. Three years later, in 2003, I deployed to Iraq. This post isn’t about that, however.
Prior to my deployment, my mother had asked her co-workers to come up with ideas for a “Journal Jar” that I could use to keep up with my writing while deployed. And, if you check out the picture below, you will see that I still have it!
Every other week, I will randomly pick a topic and write a short blog post about it. I have written some of these topics before, though I did not get to all of them, and the journal I used thirteen years ago is packed away in storage. And these journal entries will be different from ones I may have written before I’ve had a lot of changes in my life since then!
Today’s topic is: “Treasure Hunts on the Beach.”
The thing is, when I say treasure hunts, I do not mean leisurely strolls along the beach looking for shells, or driftwood, or sea glass.
No, I mean teams of two or three frantically running up and down the beach looking for items on a list so the team can win. My family is ultra-competitive (my brother, mom, and I once stayed up until 2am playing UNO and took our cards with us to bed—so no one would peek at our cards—when we didn’t finish, and then finished the game the next night) and we wanted to make the treasure hunts a competition as well. It is a standard event for most of our beach trips.
One year, in Lincoln City on the Oregon Coast, my mom, aunt, sisters, and myself decided to have a treasure hunt. I don’t remember what the winning team received, but my competitive instincts kicked in. When my aunt and I had every item on the list except for glass, I was determined to find some.
Of course, my sister, who had made this list, had assumed it would be easy. Every other trip to the coast, we never have any trouble finding sea glass. The treasure hunt for this trip, however, simply said “glass.” During my wanderings, I thought about where I would be likely to find glass on a beach.
And then it hit me. The garbage can!
So I ran up toward the parking lot, where an overflowing garbage can sat in the sand just before the sidewalk that led to the parking lot. I grabbed a bottle that was on the sand next to it and ran back down to the beach. My aunt and I won because we were the only team that had found glass. All the other teams had found all but one item on the list, and my aunt and I had all of them.
Of course, an argument started over whether the glass was actually on the beach. I told you we were competitive! When I justified it by saying the garbage was in the sand, not in the parking lot, the rest of the group reluctantly agreed that my aunt and I were the winning team.
There have been other treasure hunts, of course. We love them because it gives us an excuse to run around and act silly, and I love finding things. That time in Lincoln City is one of my favorites because the treasure hunt was so contested. But my team was still victorious!
And they’ve never let me live down the fact that I got the winning glass from a garbage pile. Families are great sometimes, aren’t they?
Writer/Editor. Voracious Book Reader. World Traveler. Veteran. Bakery Owner.