July 4th means something different to me every year. This year, I've almost finished reading Team of Rivals, so I woke up remembering that a couple of significant Union victories occurred on July 4th (Antietam was one of them, I believe). Yesterday, I ate lunch by myself and worked on my list of goals - not just short term goals, but long terms goals as well (one of my VERY long term goals is writing a novel....I expect to be in my 50's before that one happens). That exercise was really my own effort to declare freedom from my tendency to feel trapped in the past and even trapped where I am.
I know I'm extremely lucky to live in a world where I can really be the person I want to be. Not too many years ago (in the big picture of human history), my gender or my ancestors' nationality would have seriously limited my options. I tend to get frustrated when I can't accomplish my goals immediately...but the truth is that national freedom and freedom from slavery (see...Team of Rivals again...) did not happen over night, or even in just a few years. I shouldn't expect that personal freedom will be a walk in the park.
Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm off to spend 15 minutes straightening my closet because a clean closet is one of my goals. I'm tackling it in 15-minute increments over the next week. (Or however long it takes...)