Being Free – The Role We Play

Are we free?  Free to live our life how we choose. Maybe.

On July 4th we as citizens of the United States celebrate our independence from England.  As I watched the exploding, dazzling fireworks, I never gave my rights, responsibilities and opportunities as a us citizen a thought.  I take those for granted even as they influence every day of my life.  We live with certain expectations – to be physically safe, to have our basic needs such as food, water and shelter met, to own things, to travel, to work for a fair wage, free speech, etc.  In our role as a us citizen We are also expected to pay taxes, vote and follow the law.

Every day we live out the different roles we play.  I am a us citizen, wife, mother, stepmother, mother in law, ex-wife, sibling, niece, cousin, student, mentor, CPA, employer, co-worker, volunteer, etc.  Each role has expectations.  Usually the multiple roles don’t pose a problem for me, however at times I feel confused and restrained by those roles.

I recall one specific situation, my boys were young, and I reached a point of extreme frustration. I was struggling with a decision and the role of mom and ex-wife we’re providing opposite answers.  As the pressure escalated, I sat on my back porch.  It was winter and the cold air calmed me down.  It finally dawned on me – what would Mary do?  Mary as a person. The answer was easy once I took away the roles.

That was an “ah-ah” moment for me.  I make many decisions based on the role that I am playing.  However when I struggle with a decision I drop all my roles and ask what would Mary do?  I rely on my values, my ethics and my goals to reach decisions.

To me this is freedom – freedom to do as I wish.

Mary Guldan Lindstrom, CPA

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