On Monday night, Jake and I went to see Beautiful Creatures at the movie theater. There was a scene in the movie where the preacher is talking about sacrifice. I can’t remember the exact words but it was about how we think of sacrifice as giving something up. But how it’s really choosing something the more important/precious thing over something else. (Or at least that’s how I interpreted it.) When I heard this, it struck a chord with me.

There are times in my life where something feels like a sacrifice. Like not eating chocolate or baked goods I might want. Or not getting to sleep in. Even the boundaries I set for myself seem like sacrifice sometimes. And sacrifice seems like such a “burden.” I have to sacrifice, poor me. I’m such a victim. It’s another case where thinking of it as a choice point would allow me freedom and the ability to shift the victim mentality.

Thinking of sacrifice as choosing something over something else makes it feel much less about “giving up” something. Instead, it sounds a lot more like prioritizing. In this perspective, I have power. I am choosing X over Y and I could just as easily choose Y over X (or even Z over A). I am not the poor little girl who has to give something up. I am the powerful, confident person who chooses something more important for myself or others.

I am not a victim and I am not a martyr. I am deciding what matters most.

When I look up sacrifice in the thesaurus, I see abandon, surrender, forfeit, relinquish, resign, etc. Most of these seem to be associated with a lack of power. With giving up or giving in. What if letting go was an act of power?

What I’ve learned over the last few years is that no one story is true. No one perspective is right. No one way is accurate. All of the paths, perspectives and stories are possible and they are all available to me.

So why not choose the resonant one?

The one that makes me feel in control, empowered, and excited.

When I think of sacrifice as choosing something more important over something else, I feel less like a victim. I have the flexibility and control to change my mind. This is a resonant place for me.

So I’m going to go with it.

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