I used to blame all my decisions in my life on "the box." Whatever I did or did not do was either because of "the box" or to spite "the box." In any case "the box" controlled a big part of my life.
I chose my seminary because of "the box." (How would I find a boy to marry if I didn't fit his mold.) I chose my career based on "the box." (If I don't do what most girls are doing - I will not fit in - hence - be an outcast from "the box.") I dressed my children in the way that "the box" dictated. (Otherwise - they'd have no friends - yawn) I even chose my car based on "the box!" (Otherwise, we'd definitely be an outcast!)
I'm starting to see that "the box" is really something we choose whether to deal with or not. We can control our own destinies or we can allow other people to choose it for us. We can be in control over our own selves or allow other people to control us.
Each and every one of us has FREE CHOICE.
NOBODY makes us do something we do not want to do.
Although Ironically sometimes we do WANT to be controlled....
When I think of this topic, an incident comes to mind. I was at a challah baking event in Denver and I was shmoozing with the lady sitting next to me. All the women at the table were a bit older than I, so they decided to relay their accomplishments in their lives to me. One of the ladies said nonchalantly. "I never got married. I had 4 children in my lifetime. Of course - "it wasn't by choice..."
I thought to myself - everybody has free choice.
Some people just choose not to choose.
Nobody can convince you into doing ANYTHING you do not want to do.
Of course there's nothing wrong with doing what someone else wants you to do.
But, again, you are making that choice. You are choosing to comply with someone that you respect. Someone that has your best interests in mind. Or something that will help you become the person you need to become.
Your choices are yours FOREVER.
Nobody can take it from you.
You can choose to be a victim of society or you can choose to be a servant of G-D.
There's nothing in between; it's ALL or NOTHING.
You can choose to be a victim of your childhood. You can choose to be a victim in your marriage. You can choose to fit "in" (or out) the "box." You can choose to follow the crowd or not. You can choose to live up to the "Jones." You can choose to be a slave to your desires. You can choose to follow your children's desires. You can choose to follow your parent's desires. You can choose to follow your "image" around in your back pocket. You can choose to come onto people and you can choose to be independent......
Either you can choose to own up to your responsibility. Or you can choose NOT to choose.
But remember - that's also a CHOICE.
Rosh Hashanah just passed.
Let us all choose LIFE.