They call it hope.
They say this will appear like a ship coming in on a sunny day. They say there is a means to an end. It is said there is a reason for everything and that one day, everything will clear up somehow. This will all make sense and hopefully, or should I say suddenly, everything before the moments of displeasure, every twitch, every symptom, and all the discomforts and regrettable yesterdays will eventually lose impact. And at last, we can all breathe freely.
Wouldn’t that be nice?
They say to look for this because it’s coming. Maybe it comes in the mail. Or maybe this comes in momentary dreams that clear up like the waters in an un-fogged lagoon.
Or maybe we see hope in glimpses, which is enough to keep from losing it. But bear with me.
Today is a day in need of hope.
Today is a celebration in my country. This is the day we celebrate our country’s independence. And to be quite honest, I can think of no time better to have a celebration.
I can think of no other time in my history when we need a glimpse of something spectacular more than now.
I say we need a celebration.
I want to think about something else today. I want put all the back and forth dramatic conversations to the side for a moment.
I want to think about the absolute amazement that takes over the sky when the fireworks explode.
I want to think about children and the way their eyes light up the first time they hold a sparkler in their hand.
I want to think about barbecues and the dishes that we serve at them. I want to think about how refreshing it is to taste a cold, crisp piece of watermelon on a hot summer day.
I want to think about the feel of the sun on my skin or the wind in my hair or listen to the gulls take flight over the waves at a beach I’ve dreamed about since I was six years-old.
This is what today represents to me.
I want to think about the way it was when we were kids and riding around on bicycles through the streets of our town. I want to think about the parks in my neighborhood. I want to think about the sound of a radio playing somewhere. Every song was a feel-good song.
This is what today means to me.
I want to think about the feeling of cold water from a garden hose or running through a lawn sprinkler and screaming out loud as if this was the most freeing thing anyone could ever do in their life.
Does anybody remember being this way?
Does anyone remember what it meant to be young and feel this sense of amazement on days like today?
That’s what this day means to me. And no, we are not all free. No one is free to do whatever they choose. No one is free to rob the freedom of others, but yet, it happens. And I get it. I’m sorry.
However, I refuse to let go of my love for this day or my home or my town or my state or country. I will not let go, lay down, give up, or go away.
Someone once told me, “This is America. So love it or leave it.”
But I do love it so that means I can’t leave it.
No matter what.
I love it here. I will not and cannot allow anyone to take my freedom to love who I am away. I will not allow this because this is not anyone’s freedom to take.
I grew up around hate and hateful ideas. I grew up around lies and ignorance. I admit this is true but fortunately, I learned that none of what I learned was actually true at all. I learned that the skin I’m in is no better or worse or even different because beneath the skin is blood and bones and at the core, we are not different at all. We are only taught differently.
I learned that love exists across the board. I learned that color is only color and below the surface, I learned that the heart of the soul is the greatest possession on Earth. Therefore, today is a day, which in my interpretation is the day that I celebrate my freedom from ignorance.
Today is the day that I recognize the oppressiveness of ignorant thinking and how, thankfully, I was allowed the chance to recreate my understanding by learning about life through life’s experience.
I celebrate my country because I have the freedom to celebrate whatever I choose. I have the freedom to love whomever I choose. Regardless of who agrees or dislikes me, today means more to me than American History.
Today is a day I recognize how far I’ve come (and you as well).
It’s cloudy this morning. The weatherman on the radio said the skies are supposed to clear up by this afternoon.
I’m up for that.
I’m up for a celebration. I say we all need one after a long unfinished bout with quarantines and a virus that refuses to go away.
This is what today means to me. Today is a moment of reprieve. I say today is a day that we lay down our gripes. We put our differences to rest. And don’t worry. Tomorrow will come up quickly enough and we can start arguing then if the need to fight is still outstanding
I don’t always like what I see in my town or in my city or my state or my country. I say this because I have the freedom to say this. I have the freedom to disagree. I have the freedom to say America, I love it so I won’t ever leave it.
I salute you. You are more than what people think or say. You are a dream to me. You are symbol. You are a standard which I hold deeply in my heart. You are my ability to improve and my freedom to seek truth
America, I have loved you since the day I was born.
I am part of you. I am the good and the bad, the sinful and the pure. I am both the spoken and unspoken truth.
I am a contributor to the faults on your streets and partly the solution to your problems.
I am a piece of working machinery, in which I have given everything I can because first and foremost; I understand that above it all, freedom is never free.
I am not on the right side or the left side. I am not the politics of our community. Instead, I am a voice and America, I beg that you hear me now.
I have all that I have and I’ve given all that I can. I know this is true. I also know the reason why any of this is possible is because you have allowed me the freedom to do so.
I have seen the best and worst of my society. I have seen where the mistakes are and where the world has been led astray.
I have never claimed to be right or innocent or anyone better than the next. I am only me.
I am one of your sons and with this, I pledge allegiance to the Flag of The United States of America and to the republic, for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
I pledge this with all my heart but America, it seems we are more divided now than ever before. I ask you for your patience. I ask you for your tolerance. Moreover, I ask you for your guidance until the evils that we do are silenced by the light of peace, hope, and unity.
They call it hope. And yes, I have hope.
As for now America, I will keep my hope simple.
For now, I’m just hopeful to see the sky clear up by afternoon. This way I can feel the sun on my face and watch the fireworks after the sunset.
Happy 4th of July, America.
I love you