Balancing Act

On a recent vacation, I stood in awe while watching a man do a hand stand on top of five stacked wooden chairs. What we sometimes take for granted while being entertained is the time and effort behind each performance. Did Beethoven come out of the womb playing a symphony? Of course not. Did the brave balancer succeed on his first attempt? I highly doubt it.

Remember this. One of life’s treasures is the ability to start over. A setback does not define you.

You read a great book because the author didn’t quit.

You danced to your favorite song because the artist didn’t quit.

You watched your favorite team win because the athlete didn’t quit.

The world is a better place because you didn’t quit.

Back in the day…

Bald eagles and wheat pennies are proof that with rarity comes appreciation. Some may say that verbal communication can join the club. Why is it that conversation feels like a dying art while our voices still remain?

Severed words and animated emotions are here to stay. They were birthed by devices that have been keeping heads down at the dinner table for years. Back in the day, bonds were formed with utensil filled hands and sharing sessions. Expressions were read. Listening changed moods. The togetherness I’m referring to can be described in many ways; beautiful, limited, missed, forced.

We can’t fault our children for what they have resented or never known. Were you always the best company? Did other less important things disappoint a waiting better moment? I know I would turn back time if I could.

I also know that for twelve long years, my husband and I worked opposite shifts. Therefore, for twelve long years, a group text was our families virtual dinner table. Technology has turned spontaneity and frequency into treasures. Back in the day, we had no clue that we were being thought of because thoughts in their prime were lost in the lack of delivery. Before text messaging, the worried mother lost needed sleep. Morning spats lasted way longer than they needed to.

Don’t judge the electronically dependent world without prioritizing your own personal values and boundaries. Though I embrace differences, I pray there is one thing we can all agree with. There is no message or thought that is more important than a life. Do not ever, ever text and drive. But, if you’re not behind the wheel and need to compose some hurtful words, go ahead. Then, delete them without sending. Revenge is a misunderstood reaction. If you need a filter to make you feel pretty, then use one. Just know in your heart that you don’t need it.

Remember that a beautiful world surrounds you in the form of voices, paper and nature. Take advantage of them. If you love someone, pull out the earbuds and replace the podcast with a kind whisper. Send a heart emoji when distance challenges you. These simple pro active gestures have more power than you know.

YOU are a treasure!

In my case…

Bitter sweet is an over used phrase that describes a moment a feeling sad and happy at the same time. This is double the work for the over thinker. I become living proof every time a teardrop follows dead flowers into the garbage can. And every time the predictable post vacation sadness kicks in.

I thought that clarity would stop the head spins. But this empty room’s memories of little heads in my lap are not fun to be with. In a minute though, when I stretch my legs and dominate the remote, the solitude won’t feel so bad.¬† If walls could talk, I would be in the middle of a never ending dispute. One like peace while the other misses chaos. One likes cleanliness while the other misses fingerprints.

Like anything that is not good for you, unwanted thoughts are a bad habit. You know you shouldn’t do it, but you still do. Time has made it a part of you. And while you know you have a choice to stop, a twisted comfort doesn’t let you.

If you are afraid of change, you are not alone. Choices become repetitive when we realize that we like how they make us feel. In my case that’s vanilla over chocolate…drama over comedy…sweatpants over skirts. In my case it’s pinching a piece of skin to stop tears with a dam called pain. It’s better than being falsely accused of being unstable or under the influence.

In my case it’s working every single day on creating new and better habits. It’s praying for karma over plotting revenge. It’s dismissing over dwelling. It’s appreciating more. I asked a question in my very first post and I ask it again. Will you go treasure hunting with me? You don’t need a shovel, just a mirror.

YOU are a treasure!

 

Crazy Talk

When or how did you last say or think of the word¬†crazy? Did it describe a situation, a thought, a person? Was it a circumstance that threatened your comfort zone? Was it someone who, Heaven forbid, didn’t think or act the way you thought they should?

Is crazy a mental status as described by our dictionaries? Or, is it an insensitive reaction to contrast? Crazy according to Sarah is allowing differences to weaken relationships that we want and need. The selfish will not understand this. Allow me to share some real life examples:

Parking lots make me nervous, so, I almost always get front door service while my husband walks alone. I have turned many perfect moments with him into unprepared therapy sessions. And, the poor guy will probably never see all of his bucket list destinations because I am afraid of…well…just about everything.

Do my “issues” make me unlikable or give me character? Is this selfless man crazy for putting up with me or am I crazy for letting him? Is he crazy because he can ignore clutter or am I crazy because I can’t?

If we allow differences to limit our interactions, we accept a risk of loss; loss of more knowledge, loss of more companionship and so on. My daughter puts ketchup on her eggs. I find that completely disgusting, yet she will always be one of my favorite people to be around.

Ask “why” more often. You may find that adventure lies ahead. You may find a reason to feel sorry for that person who treated you poorly. You may find a reason to love yourself more. You should because…

YOU are a treasure!

Shift

Words can hurt when they hide behind devices and screens. That’s why verbal communication is still sometimes preferred. But for some of us, the keystrokes are therapy through brave expression. It’s a risky opportunity to connect with people you may never meet, because they just get it.

Fellow blogger Brittany Morefield’s descriptions of anxiety and depression are brilliantly unfiltered. In a recent post titled “In Case You’re Still Wondering About Anxiety,” I learned that she too is often asked for advice on “getting through it.” Her response reminds me of why I started the journey. I also had to “learn to help myself first.”

The following piece was written many years ago. It’s words represent the first sign of hope that I was going to fight. I recently blew the dust off and would like to share:

Today I smiled at my face in the mirror

For the first time in years

I picked up the pieces of what was a future

Whose weight once brought me to tears

I’m trading in my mask for some new mascara

I’m letting go to put time on my hands

The fog is thick and coated with wonder

But, the clearing tells me I can

Shift into gear and drive out of this haze

Where demons dance on the roads of a maze

Where temptation dangles from every tree

And sin lives in shadows that no one can see

I wasn’t dizzy today when I lifted my head

So, I stretched to pat my own back

Reintroducing myself to myself

To forget how to run with the pack

My goals spread their wings because I’ve given them choices

So, I unite a need with a plan

While on my knees watching stained glass reflecting

I believe that I can

Shift into gear and drive out of this haze

Where demons dance on the roads of a maze

Where temptation dangles from every tree

And sin lives in shadows that no one can see

Shift into gear and drive out of this haze

The new air delivers her pleasures and praise

The truth doesn’t hurt because it wears a new face

And I breathe to fill my soul of this place

While I sing goodbye…

Thanks for reading. YOU are a treasure!