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Years ago, our young adult group went camping.  About 5 of us gals were in one tent, 2 guys in another, and a married couple in a third.  The girls’ tent belonged to one of the girls whose family had used the tent when she was young, so it was one of those old canvas tents.  

In the evening it started to sprinkle.  Then it started to rain.  I snuggled up in my sleeping bag, listening to the pitter-patter against the tent & fell asleep.

I awoke to a SPLAT on my face.  Then another SPLAT.  Darn tent is leaking, I thought & covered my head.  

As I lay there trying to fall back asleep, I started to feel a cold dampness underneath me.  I’m tough!  I’m camping & this is roughing it!  No problem!  

The rain pounded away; the dampness underneath me started to spread.  What am I doing?  What am I trying to prove?  I don’t have to lie here in a puddle!  So I got up, got the car keys from my husband who was in the boy’s tent & took refuge in the car for the rest of the night.

***
I tell this story because it mirrors so many situations in my life.  I find myself in a difficult/annoying circumstance; I attempt to tough it out for any number of reasons (“I’m committed!  I’m tough!  This is what I’m supposed to do!“); I then realize that I continue to be in the situation out of my own choice.  I can make a different choice and change the situation.

Granted, I’m not magically transported to a place where I don’t have to deal with any aspect of the circumstance.  (After our campout, we had to deal with wet sleeping bags & equipment, as well as our cranky selves!)  I once read that we always have choices, and we may not like what those choices are.  But we still have choices.  

The trick is:  which choice will improve our situation?  Might we be able to suffer less?

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