I have been unable to think of topics lately that do not either bore me or terrify me so I asked my child to give me a word, or a topic, a day. I guess I have been unable to commit to writing. Her first topic for me? Commitment.
Commitment is defined as an obligation, an undertaking, application.
I think of many things when I think of commitment and of many people. My parents were committed to their family. No matter how often they disagreed or how little they seemed to enjoy being with each other, they were a unit. I realize that my older siblings do not have the same memories that I have. Mom often said that they, especially the two older girls, had different parents. Younger parents, funner parents, parents who were less care-worn. I, on the other hand, being the youngest, had the older parents, busier parents, more financially stable parents. But they were committed to raising us kids, to being contributing members of their parish, to giving us a good work ethic and sense of responsibility. I think they succeeded.
I think of my mom and her friend, our neighbor, Lucy. They were best friends. They built their houses together, back yard to back yard, and raised their kids together, at least the oldest two in each family. Lucy quit after two, but Mom had two more, several years later. When Lucy's husband was injured in a construction accident and Lucy had to go to school to go to work, Mom went with her. When Mom and Dad needed to go somewhere, my brother and I stayed with Lucy. When Lucy needed someone to stay with her husband when she worked nights, my brother stayed with Louie. Mom and Lucy worked together, went to church together and had coffee every afternoon after they woke up, both of them working the graveyard shift. Mom was committed to her friendship and Lucy to hers.
I think of my marriage. It is odd, being separated, to think of this but I have been. And I am - committed to my marriage. Marriage is a sacrament and, as such, has certain requirements and expectations. I am still married and I am still committed, or maybe I just should be. I did not leave my husband because of any desire on my part to end our marriage but more out of a sense of self-preservation and self-worth. He is still my husband and I still love him.
I think of my daughter's non-marriage. My daughter does not like being married. Something about the word makes her feel twitchy and trapped. This week, she and her new husband were not married. She and her new husband had a commitment ceremony and are now, in the eyes of the state of Texas, husband and wife. They are committed to each other and to my grandson. I think that all three are very lucky and very blessed.
Commitment papers are also issued by a court to send someone for psychiatric help when they are deemed to be a "danger to themselves or others." So far, I am not, nor have I been, thusly committed.