Category Archives: Family

Spoilt for choice

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The grass is always greener is not a new concept and it’s something which I think most of us have experienced at some point. What if I had accepted the other job? What if I’m not going to be happily ever after? What if I never see the world or get married before I’m 30? There are some questions which we might never know the answers to but there comes a time when you just have to make a decision and stick to it (sometimes for better or for worse…) or at least that’s what I thought.

According to the authors of The choice effect: Love and Commitment In An Age Of Too Many Options a new generation of women exists – the choister. A choister is “a woman who, by happy accident of geography and timing, has more options at her fingertips than any previous generation.”

Choisters are normally, like myself, in their twenties living in a western democracy and have everything they could ever want within their reach ( perhaps not always in budget but still attainable!). Fancy a 12 month sabbatical and a trip around the world? Or perhaps a baby at 42? Maybe you want to have 25 boyfriends before you settle down? It’s all possible.

And what about your career? Job possibilities may be slimmer in the current climate but the actual options haven’t diminished. We can still choose between office worker, pilot or president if that’s what takes our fancy. Something previous generations of women didn’t have so easy.

However, all this choice makes it even harder for us to actually choose. With so many great possibilities, how are we supposed to know which is the best one to take? What if we make the wrong decision and regret it. I mean, I can’t even choose where I want to go on holiday. What if I go to the Asia but we could have had more fun in the States? What if, what if…. Life’s great mystery! Really I should be telling myself: “Oh for god’s sake… just be grateful that you can go anywhere at all outside your home town!”

We have become spoilt as a generation and unhappy because of it. With so many ‘What If’s?’ going around your head, it makes it hard to stop and appreciate what you actually have. A house, a good job, a family, a partner and most importantly health. Even if we just have a couple of these, shouldn’t it be enough to make us happy?  Well, it seems not. Perhaps life was easier when it was all mapped out for us a few generations ago: marriage, babies and growing old. Doesn’t sound too exciting but at least we would have just got on with life instead of wondering about it. Hmmm.. What if I could travel back in time and give it a try? What if……Luckily that’s not a choice for me… YET!

Some fashions never change

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I mentioned in one of my earlier posts that it seems to be getting harder and harder to keep up with ever-changing fashion trends nowadays. However, I’ve recently realised that there are some fashions which never change.

Think about a wedding or a funeral for example. It’s just expected that the bride wears white and at a funeral, everyone wears black. In fact, I remember once at a family funeral, one of my cousins wore a bright green coat and everyone acted as if there was an elephant in the room. The older generations just shook their heads while the younger family members stared in shock. Personally,  I just kept thinking “good on you! everyone’s sad enough already, we don’t need all this gloomy black on top of it!”  But I was still sitting there in my black dress and coat and will probably continue to do so at other funerals.

To be honest, I think I actually like it, the stability and tradition of it all, something that seems to be disappearing in so many other ways. I just find it surprising that the custom has stayed so strong. As I am writing this, I am thinking of one of my ‘readers’ who I know for a fact didn’t get married in white… dark red I think it was actually… but she’s a special case! ;)

I also know that this isn’t true for all religions or cultures so I am generalising slightly but it does seem that black funerals and white weddings are two things that have definitely stuck.  When you were young and you thought about your dream wedding, I doubt that you imagined yourself in a purple or a blue dress! And if you have a funeral to go to, I bet you’re not worrying about what colour dress to buy either.

I know that there is reason behind these things; white is meant to show purity and black is worn as a sign of respect but doesn’t anyone else think it’s strange that everything else seems to be continuously changing and evolving yet this stays the same? I certainly know that people aren’t as ‘pure’ at their weddings anymore yet most dresses are still white… Maybe it’s true what they say: people just don’t like change.

Just something to think about…  and in case you’re wondering, if I ever get married then you’ll definitely be seeing me in white!

Let’s take off the blindfold

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To be honest, I don’t really mind if a film has been awarded an Oscar, a Razzie or a Nobel Prize, I’ll still go and see it if it’s got a good trailer. The only thing I ask is that it makes me feel something while I’m watching it, whether this be angry, sad, happy, in love… anything!!

The Blind Side did exactly that. I had heard mixed views about the film but like I say that didn’t make a difference to me, I wanted to see it anyway and make up my own mind, and I’m glad I did.

It was one of those movies that made me leave the cinema thinking  a lot… about people, life, luck and just about how we live together in society nowadays.

The film may be a bit predictable but it’s not a storyline that’s been invented in Hollywood; it’s a true story about a real family from Mississippi who opened their home and family to someone less fortunate than themselves.

The story really touched me but at the same time it made me feel a bit guilty… how often do we really do anything for someone else anymore? When you see someone struggling on the street, asking for money or trying to talk to you on a train, do you actually take time out of your day to help them? To see what it is they are asking you? Or do you just ignore them, think “it’s not my problem” and walk on. I’m not going to exclude myself from this category because I would probably do exactly the same. I usually think that someone else will give some coins to the guy asking for money on the street or will keep the lonely guy on the train company and so I just get on with my own life.

The Blind Side made me think about if I would take someone into my home who was less fortunate than myself but to be honest I probably wouldn’t… But I would like to think that at least if I see someone today or tomorrow or the day after who needs my help then I will offer it to them and I will try to do what I can for somebody else.

So why don’t you start today too, take off the blindfold and take a look at the people around you, try and see if you can do something good for someone else without getting anything in return? You never know.. it might even catch on….

The Inspiring Thuoy Family