I woke up this morning from a dream about a time mountain lion in a tree and I thought, okay, beside it being a day off and getting to sleep late, what does the Forth of July mean to me.
The images started to flash through my head, fireworks, hamburgers, a film I saw with Danno from Hawaii Five-O in it at Colonial Williamsburg, more fire works, those red paper poppies you get when you give a dollar to benefit Veterans, fireworks over NYC and the Statue of Liberty in a snow globe, Arlington Cemetery, the Star Spangled Banner being sung at a public event (which I refused to stand up for in protest to for many years. Protesting a war no doubt, there always seems to be one of those) and fireworks. How it amazes me that even with all the technology we have, video games, big exploding movies, giant TV’s with big exploding movies, iphones and ipods and ipads. We still get a thrill from fireworks. I know I do. There’s something sublime about them. Mimicking explosions and destruction yet beautiful at the same time. Something in the loud bangs and booms that get the adrenaline going and then the beauty of them which tells us it’s ok, it’s all under control, no one is going to get hurt.
But once the fireworks faded I realized the Forth of July is really about Independence. I remember reading the Declaration of Independence about five years ago when I was going through my divorce, and I felt like it had been written for me personally.
“Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”
How can you fight a whole Government if you can’t even stand up for yourself, if you don’t believe you are worthy, or believe it good to suffer. Independence, breaking away from the tribe. Creating my own rules, just for me and changing them when they no longer work. Trusting my gut and acting on it. Then believing in myself enough to want to share it.
Independence, that’s something I understand and can celebrate, for the individual and for the whole country.