“Life is a great big balancing act”

How many times have you heard someone ask, “For you, is the glass half-empty or half-full?” As I writer, I hate how unoriginal that question is. Isn’t it time someone asked what end of the see-saw you’d be on- the higher or the lower? Because if they did, I’d be able to answer them honestly that I’d be on neither- I’m that kid who stands in the middle and tries to see if they can balance their weight evenly between. There are a lot of things I hate about life (sweaters that snag, dishes that have to be washed, schoolwork that makes no sense even to teachers…) and there’s a lot I love about life (birthdays, dogs, sleepovers where people don’t actually sleep…) Like Dr. Seuss said, life is a great big balancing act! Sometimes the see-saw tips towards one end, sometimes towards the other. I have good weeks and bad weeks, and I have good days and bad days within good weeks and bad weeks.

I suppose everyone’s scale tips a bit towards the down side now that it’s winter here, and the days get darker before you’re ready for the night, but whenever I start to feel my balance tip down on one side, I always remind myself that Thanksgiving and Christmas are coming up, and that makes me pretty even. Besides, I can always reason with myself that the dark comes earlier in winter so that kids don’t have to wait as long on Christmas for Santa to come. I know you could get just about every weatherman to argue with me on this, but I stand firm in my belief that if it’s getting darker in winter, there is some legitimate, magical reason that has nothing to do with the fact that Mother Nature was feeling sadistic the day she invented winter.

I guess that’s the secret to living on a see-saw. You have to find things to balance yourself out: Find the good to sweeten the bad. (Or salt the bad. I don’t know why things always sweeten your day. Sometimes I think good things just add kick to my day, which is what you’re trying to do when you have a boring meal and you add salt. But I digress.) Here are some examples of how to sweeten salt a few common problems in teenage life.

High school is sucking away your life one day at a time. Your future career will repay you for your effort. Literally. Like, in money.

 It’s getting colder. The sky will make it up to you by raining sparkles down on you (otherwise known as snow.) If someone told you all you had to do was turn down the thermostat and they’d make your whole world sparkly, I don’t think anyone would hesitate to take the cold for the sake of the sparkly.

Your parents have expectations for you that go above and beyond what any human should be expected to do. Above and beyond what humans do means superpowers. Your parents are giving you superpowers. Stop complaining.

 You’re sick. Princesses get sick. You have something in common with princesses.

Of course, a balancing a see-saw needs to have a little weight on both sides, meaning there have to be some bad things, too. But I’m not going to give you any advice on how to make your day worse. If your see-saw is tipping you so high you’re flinging off it may be time to get off and go back to a full glass, or maybe you want to move to a safer playground apparatus like a swing or something, and then you can keep getting higher and higher safely. (If you couldn’t tell, I’m chock full of prophetic metaphors. If you ever need one, just send a request, because I have tons.)

Well, whatever the case may be- if your glass is half full or half empty, if your see-saw is tilted up or down, or if you’re (heaven forbid) going down a slide at the moment, I hope this post may have pushed your swing a little higher, or rocked your see-saw up a bit, etc. In other words, I hope you have a great day!



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