What about me?

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Woman at desk asking "what about me?"

One day, quite a few years ago now, I was in my office at the newspaper, working on laying out the features section for the Sunday paper, when the PR girl from one of the local colleges stopped by for a visit.

“I’ve just turned in my notice,” she told me, adding after a quick breath, “if you want my job, call my boss.”

So, almost as easily as that, I went from being a journalist to a PR person.

I arrived in higher ed about the same time as email — at least for that campus — and quickly subscribed to an email list designed to provide daily devotionals for women. I remember clicking on the first email with excitement, looking forward to an uplifting message and a good word to help me through my day.

What I found was advice that wouldn’t have helped my mom, who as a mother of three worked hard both at home and at her full-time job. There, before my eyes, was a message telling me to not procrastinate and be sure to tackle the household chores during the day so I could turn off the dryer when my husband got home. After all, I read, he would have had a long, hard day.

My eyes blinked along with the cursor, and I felt the guilt that is all to common among my generation. Unlike Susie Homemaker out of a 1950s sitcom, I needed to work. I wanted to work. And now this devotional, which I had expected to help me, was making me feel worse. What was up with that?

“He’s surely had a long, hard day?” I huffed at the screen. “What about me?”

I remember that moment like it was yesterday, and I wish I could tell young Dawn (who was getting ready to celebrate her first wedding anniversary) something:

“When you ask ‘What about me?’, you’ve asked the wrong question.”

I spent too much of my time then (and, if I’m honest, too much of today) focusing on me, on what makes me happy, and even on thinking of things others could or should be doing to help make sure I am happy.

Psalm 118:24 (ESV) tells us, “This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”

I don’t read anything in that verse about waiting on others to do things to make me happy or worrying my way into happiness. I see a call to be happy, to rejoice in the goodness of the Lord. My joy should come from the Lord, and as Luke 6:45 says, produce good from the good treasure in my heart.

That’s why I was super excited when my friend Dana first told me her idea for The Pink Typewriter Project. I love the idea of spreading positive thoughts and intentionally trying to be a blessing to others. So, when I sit down at that typewriter, my fingers will type out a simple reminder:

The question is not 'What about me?' The question is 'Who can I be a blessing to today and how?' Click To Tweet

the question is not what about me. It is who can I be a blessing to today and how?

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