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Independence Day: Freedom to Break Up?

Karen Farris

Even the best relationships can fail. There were warning signs. Sigh.

We really need to talk. I think you probably know what I'm going to say. Things just aren't the same. You no longer act the way you used to. I've tried to believe in you, but I'm working way too hard and I don't feel like you're doing your share.

After being together this long these feelings really hurt. But you've changed. I have tons of memories of better days. Like years ago at the beach when the hardest decision was whether to get ice cream or go for another swim. I loved our freedom together.

I remember the opportunities you gave me to do whatever I wanted. You let me go to college and then study whatever I wanted. You even helped me through. You let me take all those crazy part-time jobs that taught me how money was really earned.

But the ultimate was when you agreed to let me buy a farm. Yes, me. You probably knew it wouldn't work, but hey, why not try? When I failed, it hurt, but slowly I came back from those losses. It took awhile, but you stayed with me. And you always gave me my freedom to be me.

Even though I totally blew it on the farm deal, you let me try something else on my own. It took about ten years, but it worked. You didn't make it easy on me though. That's when I could see you were changing.

Having kids wasn't easy on me either. Talk about expensive! But each child changed my life. They were worth every dollar and every day I spent taking care of them. Now look: they can take care of themselves. But are you helping them? I don't think so. You're too busy spending everything you have; nothing will be left for them.

Now, I'm too old to do much else. Worked hard all these years and I doubt I can retire when its time. All I hear from you is that you're in debt. Well what about me? I didn't overspend. I tried to save and invest but what has it gotten me? I guess you could say I'm tired and disappointed in you. You let me down.

Why are you bringing up our pledge to each other now? Yes, I know you've never left me. Yes, I remember how you helped me a long time ago. I know, I know, you still help me even now. But it was so much easier back then. I want things like they used to be. What do you expect? I thought you could handle everything. You were always so strong.

I always gave you what you asked for, and I admit, I didn't offer much else. Now your burdens are so heavy you're about to collapse. I don't know, maybe I could do more. Maybe I should. I realize I have been selfish. When everything was great I had no problem staying with you. So who am I to leave you when you need me?

I really do love you. I just stopped telling you. And I stopped thanking you for all you've done for me. I wouldn't be here without you. I used to repeat my vow to you more often. And I meant those words. I still do. Maybe our pledge is more for my benefit than yours.


I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

I see things a bit more clearly now. I think the first thing I'm going to do is stop complaining. And then I'm going to get busy helping you. Maybe we can rediscover our magic from long ago. But even if it takes awhile, I'll never leave you. Thank you America, and God bless you.

Karen Farris served in the crisis pregnancy ministry — traveling thousands of miles and speaking to over 10,000 students about their life choices — for nearly a dozen years. She became a grant writer and helps find resources for projects that serve those in poverty, mainly children. She's been a blogger since 2010 — Friday Tidings — sharing stories of faith, life, and purpose to give hope in a hurting world.

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