The Freedom To…

With Independence Day on Monday, it should be a time for Americans to evaluate what freedom is, to be thankful for it, to honor those who strive to give it to us.

I believe Americans tend to take Independence Day for granted. Sure, most cities have fireworks displays, most businesses close for the holiday, but what does it really mean to Americans?

Our forefathers fought so their families could pursue happiness for themselves and their children. It’s knowing that even though you were born poor, there are ways to claw and work your way to the top of the capitalist pile. It’s pursuing the American dream and making something of yourself, helping your children make more of themselves.

My aunt came to the United States from South Korea in the mid 70s. She didn’t speak English and only had a picture of my dad which my uncle (her husband) had given her. She came here alone, six months pregnant, and thinking everyone lived like the Ewings did on Dallas. She got over that belief real quick, but she had a dream.

She became a citizen in the next few years, working as a waitress, and raised her son. In the late 80s, she decided she and her husband needed to follow her dream. They moved away from our small town and she started making contacts. A couple of years later, she had a small stand in a flea market. Two years later, she had her first store. Five years after that, she opened another store.

By the time she finished, she had three stores in one town and another in our small town. She’d fulfilled her dream of being an entrepreneur. It wasn’t much by some standards. She never became a millionaire from her hard work. She never opened a chain of stores across the south, but she set out to do what she’d planned to.

That’s what Independence Day is to me. It’s having the freedom to work towards a dream. It’s knowing that our freedoms are there because of them. It’s knowing that you can go into business for yourself without someone telling you no. It’s knowing you can become a writer and there’s nothing anyone can do about it.

That’s freedom.

About danicaavet

Danica Avet lives and writes in the wilds of South Louisiana. Unmarried with no children, she's the proud pet of two cats and a dog. With a BA in History, she decided there were enough fry cooks in the world and tried her hand at writing. Danica loves losing herself in the antics of her characters and blushes more often than not at the things they do. She likes to define her work as paranormal romance with a touch of Cajun spice, but most times her characters turn the notch up to "five-alarm fire"!
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7 Responses to The Freedom To…

  1. jeff7salter says:

    “the freedom to work towards a dream”
    Yes, indeed! And amen!
    We have a wonderful nation where you can pursue YOUR dreams … rather than the ravings of a dictator or the rigid and invasive constricts of a state-run ‘religion’.
    Vote? if we want to … and HOW we want to.
    Worship? if we want to … and HOW we want to.
    Buy and/or sell? if we want to … and WHAT we want to.
    Travel? if we want to … and WHERE we want to.
    Love? if we want to … and WHO we want to.
    America — what a great place to spend our time on this earth.

    Like

    • danicaavet says:

      Exactly. I think people tend to forget all of that when they’re going about their everyday lives, but all I have to do is look at my aunt to see the American Dream.

      Like

  2. Awesome- I have heard your stories of this amazing woman and I am proud of her and her vision. Way to go to the immigrants that founded this country and keep coming to make their way here, truly the land of dreams.

    Like

    • danicaavet says:

      Yup, that’s what this country was founded upon. A dream, the desire to succeed, and hard work. It does pay off, people just have to realize that the best things in life don’t just fall into your lap, you have to work for them!

      Like

  3. I love hearing about your aunt, Danica. She is a person of immense spirit!

    I believe the personal struggle to gain our freedom from British rule should be taught in every classroom. All the hooey about ‘not upsetting tender little people’ with the atrocities involved is ridiculous. You can express what happened commensurate to age and maturity. People everywhere need to know the true cost!

    Hug you aunt for me! Tell her people like herself are what make up the back bone of America!

    Like

  4. Micki Gibson says:

    I LOVE the story about your aunt. She is a true inspiration. Not all success stories have to involve millionaires. I love the “quieter” ones whose fortunes are not measured by their bank account, but rather by their positive affect on others. Sounds like your aunt was a fantastic lady.

    Like

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