September 26th, 2011

Before You Complain, Remember: It Could Be Worse…

Posted by julieengel in Uncategorized

Every day when I wake up, I wake up to a luxurious life. I’m not saying that I’m wealthy or have an abundance of material things. What I am saying is that when I wake up, I browse the internet at my leisure or call my friends on my Blackberry. I can go to the movies with my friends or eat dinner with my family. This is what makes my life luxurious, especially in comparison to people who aren’t able to do such things, such as our men in uniform. Soldiers will be able to make a phone call to their loved ones every several months at best. The idea of not seeing my family and friends alone is scary, but not being able to talk to them for months seems like torture. Americans are addicted to their cell phones, so imagine going overseas and that’s suddenly gone? How would you even react when your communication with the world is taken away?

We take for granted things, like being able to have dinner with our families, when soldiers would kill to have home cooked meals with their loved ones. Regular citizens in America complain about having to work their minimum wage paying job or having to read a book for school. I think it’s pretty hilarious that we all have the nerve to complain about such petty things (and we are all guilty of doing so). Soldier’s overseas are fighting for us, dealing with such lovely things like sandstorms and 120 degree weather. A great deal of their comrades die or get severely injured in war, which is something we don’t have to see or deal with here on American soil; Soldiers deal with it on the regular. Remember how it feels when a loved one dies? Now imagine you had to feel that way over and over because so many people you knew were being killed. So how is it that we have the audacity to complain about our lives that are so comfortable and easy in comparison to these brave soldiers? I guess we’re all just very self-absorbed.

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2 Responses to ' Before You Complain, Remember: It Could Be Worse… '

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  1.    jenny abeles said,

    on September 27th, 2011 at 11:20 pm

    Wow, Julie. You took my advice and ran with it. Your language here is very controlled and direct but beneath it is a kind of molten anger, and I mean anger in the good sense. The kind of anger that arises when an affront to justice has been made, and I can’t say you’re wrong about most of us being pretty self-absorbed most of the time. We *do* complain about petty things–you’re absolutely right, and a little perspective–provided by our troops overseas, child prostitutes in Mumbai, or homeless people on the corner–makes us feel ashamed of such whimpering and grateful for the relative luxury of our lives. You’ve hit the nail on the head in a terse, economical piece of prose. This is affecting and effective–it strikes both at the level of the heart and mind. Your tone is effective here–what other tones can you experiment with? Elegiac, encomiastic, philosophical, analytical, etc–so many suit this topic.

    Keep up the good work!

  2.    Pru said,

    on September 29th, 2011 at 3:13 am

    hello there and let me say I really liked the bog! It got me thinking of things I nomally don’t. I liked the use of language. One question that I asked myself when reading it was do you know anyone over seas? And if so how does that make you feel?

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