Deserve. I hear and use this word a lot. But what does it mean? It's one of those words that gets thrown around, and it's base lies in the eye of the beholder.
1. To earn by service; to be worthy of (something due, either good or evil); to merit; to be entitled to; as, the laborer deserves his wages; a work of value deserves praise.
I realize that I frequently make comments using this word. This person deserves this, that one doesn't. Most commonly in my job stating this mom or that deserves to lose their parental rights to their children. But why?? What gives me the right to make any such judgments? Now granted, at my work I see some pretty horrific things. Neglect, physical abuse, sexual abuse, drug abuse. You name it, I've more then likely had to deal with it on my case load, or had to learn about it in training, or knew about it on someone else's case load. This bombardment of negativity would eventually turn the stomach of Mother Teresa, and Mary Poppins would switch from a spoon full of sugar to a glass full of boos.
The longer I work here, the more I learn that many of these moms and dads had no level ground on which to built their own house of parenting. You are what you know. Many of the drug users are just trying to get by, but the children become collateral as their parents can't even meet their own needs.
So who deserves what? Did these parents deserve better parents? Do they deserve another chance? Do the kids deserve to be severed from their parents and all of their relatives?
Or more simply thought, do people deserve to have bad things happen to them? How do we know someone deserves something when it's a good thing, but not a bad? Maybe I don't deserve to be a parent, maybe I do. Maybe I deserve this job, maybe I don't. Maybe women in Africa deserve to die of AIDS, maybe they don't.
This is where your belief system jumps in. If you believe in karma, God, nothing; those things are all designed to attempt to answer the questions about who deserves what and why. But this doesn't stop the internal need to answer these questions and jump to conclusions ourselves. And what damage does that do? When my friends say 'you deserve to be a mother', my initial response is 'why'? What do you base this belief on? if you look at my history, the risk of my screwing up at parenting is much higher then average. Combined with my tendency to be lazy, not follow through on things, get bored easily, love to sleep, and controlling manner, it's a recipe for chaos and disaster. And you think I deserve to throw a child into that mix? What am I missing here?
But there I am telling someone else they deserve to be a mother, too. And I usually base it on my gut. Except with fellow bloggers, and then god help me if there's any rhyme or reason to my justification! What I've read? What they've commented? Or I don't have anything to base why they don't deserve.
So maybe we should all leave it up to the powers that be.
But my my my wouldn't that be boring~