6th July 2015

Independence Day thoughts

The festivities may have subsided and the fireworks have finally silenced (and all of pet owners take a huge sigh of relief), but this holiday is still playing on my mind. 

As we tuned into radio stations celebrating America’s birthday, fired up the grill and called around some friends to celebrate it made me so thankful that I could be anywhere in the world and still celebrate who I am and where I’m from. Celebrating from abroad for three years now has both caused me to reminisce on the simple pleasures and gain a new perspective.

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 It’s made me so thankful for growing up in a country where anything is possible and the sky’s the limit. To know what it feels like to pull together and stand united, to live amongst those who have chosen to lay down their lives to fight for our freedom and to embody the spirit that we are known for around the world. I took for granted that homecoming wasn’t just something out of the movies and Friday night lights are more than just a TV show. That country music isn’t blared across three radio stations, in fact, not even one. I took for granted that sporting events were led with the Star Spangled Banner and school days began with a moment of silence if I so chose to pray. That our money, our court houses and the Pledge of Allegiance have God stamped on them. That BBQs, beach days & fireworks are one of life’s greatest simple pleasures and that no other country could ever top the taste of our homemade apple pies.

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On the other hand, living abroad has increased my views and opinions. It has taught me to appreciate cultural differences and respect other ways of life. It has taught me that there is another world out there, that people want America to stand for what is right and fight for moral reasons not political gain. It’s made me realize that a country of our stature can have a positive impact if we choose to step out of our bubble and choose to step into the realm of the rest of the world. To show love, compassion and to empathize. To beat our chests less and to recognize the fact that we’ve drifted from the vision our founding fathers left us. We need to get back to fighting for what is right, empowering the inventors, the creators, the movers and shakers, teach our children that the American dream is more than attainable and settling for an easy life isn’t going to shape and change the world, we need to start caring about our neighbors more and get back to finding cures and exploring the universe. We were brave and fearless. Those that went before us to set the foundations in which we stand had the people’s best interests at heart. We must not grow weary of fighting to get back to those principles from which our declaration evolved.

I’ll always stand for the Stars and Stripes, get chills every time I hear the national anthem, never-ever forget where I’m from no matter where I am in the world and always remain proud of the USA.

However living abroad has also taught me that the old wives’ tale is in fact wrong and I can have my cake and eat it too because the best of both worlds are now apart of who I am.

Happy Birthday to the red,white and blue and way to go team USA women’s soccer! 

  • I love this post, Tara. Living abroad really does let you have your cake and eat it too (and a beautiful one too!)