Here we are already five days into the New Year. I decided to take down the Christmas tree and all the decorations that go with that wonderful time of the year.
Sigh. I hesitated. If you read my post O Christmas Tree then you know that we cut down a fresh tree. A VERY fresh tree. I hadn’t watered it but once since we first got it (the day after Thanksgiving). Very few needles had dropped and it was still fresh with sap.
Sadly, I decided to strip it of it’s magical lights and simple, nostalgic ornaments and send it on it’s way. We decided to stick it in the backyard where the birds can enjoy it and who knows, maybe saplings will pop up. Maybe not, since I have no idea how they come about.
But as I sat there, thinking about taking it down, all the ornaments piled on the coffee table before me, I got to thinking (a dangerous past time I know ; ). I got to thinking about the other reason I was hesitating. You see, I have a lot of thinking and hoping stock in this New Year. The last two and a half years have been a somewhat temporary situation. Mostly with our housing. It’s been alright for the most part, but having a landlord who just loves to save money any way he can has proven to be quite uncomfortable in many ways.
We are ready. We are so ready to find a better dwelling place. I don’t need large, I just need slighter bigger. I don’t need a dishwasher, but I do need central air. Just to name a couple. As a matter of fact, I want simple.
So back to the hesitation of taking down the decorations. That whole act speaks to me about moving forward. And I’ll be honest here, I hate moving forward IF there will be no change. That sounds silly to some, even to me a little, because the very act of moving forward implies there will be change.
Here enters that awful player called irrational fear. I hate him. He’s a bad actor and a liar. I cannot let him convince me he is good in any way. So there! The fear of things not changing is daunting. BUT, I am intentionally choosing to ignore that limelight stealer!I am moving forward! Tally-Ho! and all that goes with it!
And I know I am not alone in this. So many of my friends are anticipating change, for the good. Good changes in health, life, jobs, homes. The list can go on and on! My prayers are that we all get there. And that we surrender our fears and stress to the One who can take us all the way through, no matter what the path is like.
Ouch. I am more aware that if I fear then I am not walking in His perfect love. Oh how I want that. Always a work in progress. And I am really glad to be a work in progress. That means I’m still alive and we’ve got work to do – Him and I. I love it. Even the “ouches” I love. It means fellowship with my God, my Friend who totally gets me and enjoys my company and I, His.
I was faced, recently, with the question: What are my goals for my blogging adventure? Ugh. Goals, to me, belong in soccer or football. I’m just kidding, but, making a list of goals has always been difficult for me. Let me tell you why.
I am the type of person who runs from goals, most of the time, simply because I’m afraid I won’t make them. Yup, it’s that simple. I give myself a deadline or a list of things I want to accomplish and I do the opposite. And that is due to fear. The old fear of failure. So I guess that when I make those goals I just jump right past them and into the finish line……. of failure.
This day, February 2nd, 2015, I will tell you some of my blogging goals and then they will be out there in the wild blue web-os-sphere for all to see.
I want to be heard. I want to say such profound words that ears will open and hearts will change
I want to increase traffic to my blog
I want to increase the like button activity and more nice comments (nice ones, please)
I want more like-minded blogging friends and buddies and followers
I want to make money blogging
I want another trip to Hawaii
That sounds awful to me. Sounds selfish but it is what I want.
Dear readers, there you have it. My goals and I hope you help me achieve them or whittle the list down or even change it some to be more realistic. In other words, give me your kind advice. I am a creative person and take criticism seriously and will probably cry. 😉 And I’m a grandmother………
I am side tracking from my mini-series of summer time memories – even though I have only posted one post on summer – I will continue later today or tomorrow.
But a new thing has popped up in my life. Please know that I am in no way mocking or taking phobias lightly . Not at all. I am simply making a humorous attempt to laugh at my self, and I do laugh at me only.
We live in Missouri. We have lived here only a little over five years. Prior to that, the forty years my husband and I have been married, we have lived in coastal states.
Here is a little how my mind works……..
In coastal states there are obvious land boundaries. On the west coast we have the Pacific Ocean and the mountains. I felt secure, so to speak. Actually, I never felt afraid to go far because it wasn’t an issue. All was secure. By “it wasn’t an issue” I mean it never entered my head that there was a boundary of any kind.
Same on the east coast. We had the Atlantic Ocean (sometimes in our backyard, literally) and it was fine.
Well, you take a coastal girl and put her in the middle and a strange thing can happen……. there is nothing but land in all four directions. We won’t hit a wall of mountains until we get across Kansas. Kansas is vast (in my head). It’s so Oz-like. I haven’t even been to Oklahoma where the wind goes sweeping down the plain!
In this area of Missouri we have a road appropriately named, “State Line Road”. Why? On one side is Missouri and on the other is Kansas. In one given outing it is not uncommon to cross the border of the states a number of times. No problem. It makes it fun to shop.
So, back to my new realized phobia. We went to a wedding and the reception was in a park in Kansas. No biggie, like I just said, it is easy and normal to go across state lines here. Well, as we headed further west on the interstate, I got a little nervous. I kept asking my husband, “How far into Kansas are we going?!?” He said just a little ways. I saw familiar town names and relaxed because I knew they were close by the border. Then I saw things like metal silhouettes of bison and Native Americans and wagon trains, and The Oregon Trail signs……. again, “How far into Kanas are we going?!?”
I realized then that I had an irrational fear of the vast open plains. Please note – there are no vast open plains on the border of Missouri and Kansas. Not the Kansas City area anyway! That is the irrational part. Hahaha. I was a bit un-nerved over this trip. It came to me that I really felt very insecure going out into the wilds of the west. Dang! That may put a damper on my desire to see Oklahoma! Where the wind comes sweeping down the plain. **please note: we have driven across our entire nation at least six times and I was fine – but we had a destination!
I was telling my son about this and he totally understood. Since we came from coastal areas it seemed normal for us to feel a bit insecure. I think we all, unknowingly, make boundaries in our minds. Boundaries of insecurity. Boundaries of security. I think it’s pretty normal. It’s what I do with it that can become the real problem. Most fears are irrational (I am not a professional – just an older lady who thinks a lot). Now, if I was running for my life from terrorists with Jack Bauer – well, we all know that would be a rational fear of mega proportions ( older lady with too much time to think).
I know phobias are very real to people. I had a period in my life where it was real. Thankfully, I did overcome that fear with a lot of prayer and help from friends and my relationship with God. After all, we are just little people in a very big world.
Have fun with this post – I did. You can laugh at me – especially you mid-westerners who do not understand how weird it is to live here when we are not from here – lighten up on us transplants!
Here is a pic of how vast the wilds of Kansas can look:
I WILL go to Oklahoma! And I will take pics and write a post about it. I may even sing the song! For your enjoyment I am sharing a youtube video of HughJackman starring in the musical Oklahoma! Obviously his pre-Wolverine days. I’m impressed and did giggle.
This is day #20 in the NaBloPoMo thirty day blog challenge.
Almost there. I have a hard time following the prompts they suggest, but some are pretty good.
But today I am doing my own thing, again. The subject of Dog Parks popped into my head. I have never taken my dogs to a dog park. It’s hard enough walking them through a people park when we run into other dogs. They want to play and they want to play bad! The thought of letting them go to romp and play with other dogs frightens me. I just may be more afraid of that than standing on the rim of a very high cliff, or the wing of an airplane! I’ve been to Pet Smart when the Doggie Daycare is in full swing play mode. I stood at that window watching all the drooling dogs of various breeds and sizes and saw the look on the playground monitor’s face. Fighting? Bullies? Yes. I just can’t see letting my precious doggies loose to fend for themselves. They both just want to play. But these are dogs. Dogs are territorial and I’ve experienced lovely tail wagging dogs turn against each other in an instant. Am I overly protective of my pups? Are these free-for-all pup parks a breeding ground for disaster or future therapy sessions for our doggies?
I also worry about me! What if these oh-so-playful pups who “never would bite anyone” decide I look edible? Scares me big time. I never tell ANYONE that my dogs are friendly and would never bite you. Dogs can be a bit unpredictable sometimes, especially if they sense your fear or dislike of dogs.
So help me out. Tell me your experiences of Dog Parks. I truly want to relieve my fears and take my pups – maybe. Wait. I think it’s me that may need the therapy for that fear.
Today is Halloween in my part of the world. It happens every year on the 31st of October. I have mixed feelings on this day. Some even call it a holiday now although I’ve always had to work at regular wages and we never got that day off. But that’s OK, we all have things we love and that makes us – us.
The only things I don’t like about Halloween is that there has become an increase of blood and death and terror. We had a house on the main road that set up a life- sized pentagram in their yard with a life sized human body on it…….scared the kids on the school bus each day as it passed by. And when a co-worker of mine stopped by this house after his shift one year (they were relatives) he passed out and died in the front yard. I’m not saying there was a connection – he did have a type of aneurism but one’s mind could wander and wonder. They didn’t set it up the next year.
And now, since I’ve lived in the mid-west, I have managed to live on streets where absolutely no trick or treat -ers come by. Where are they? So I stopped buying candy a few years ago – I eat it all if no one comes. It is kind of sad.
But I will watch some sifi show tonight or read a good book and crave Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. The rest of you – stay safe and have some pure innocent fun!
Another tragedy for America – The Boston Marathon Bombings. With each disaster that hits our nation comes a twinge of pain, as in an old wound that acts up from time to time. When we experienced first hand a great loss in our family (see Prisoner of Hope series on this blog) it brought a wound that will never totally heal. I’m not even sure that is the right phrasing – I feel I’ve healed in the sense that I got through the initial shock and severe blow of loss – but the pain of loss will always be there. It will pop up when I hear of others pains and loss. It acts up much like arthritis or other similar ailments due to weather change, etc. But much harder. With each new attack of disaster or missing children or even forecasts of severe storms, the pain twinges.
But know that with each twinge it does a good thing deep down inside of me. I’ll try to put it into words. I think that those who understand these words will get this and those who don’t quite, but almost, it will cause you to look deeper within. These twinges bring to me a strong desire for fellow human beings. We are all vulnerable to hard times, to disasters, etc. No one is exempt from hard times. No one. So my heart aches and hurts for those who are hit – in any shape or form – from bullying to misunderstandings to loss and devastation.
My heart goes out to Boston and all those who attended that Marathon. It was a day that represents great victory for all who trained and ran – and turned into such a low blow – such heart ache.
My heart goes out to those who can’t grasp this. I saw some FB posts that implied that this is daily occurrence in other nations – so we should think more of them. I understand that. But here in the USA it is not a daily occurences. It is not part of our daily lives. My heart aches for those nations who do live this way in fear, I want that to change for them. But I also want America to rise up and unite and stand on our roots. I want us to want violence to stop. I don’t know if this is realistic or not. But THERE IS ALWAYS HOPE. ALWAYS.
I pray for our law and government safety enforcement and medical teams to be safe and to have wisdom to thwart these plots in advance. I pray for all who attended that fear would not become a part of their lives and I pray for those who lost that healing would come and they would become stronger through such loss. and able to help others.
Several years ago while enjoying Six Flags Great Adventure Amusement Park in NJ I saw a teenage boy with one of those “No Fear” brand t-shirts on. It attracted my attention because on the front it said, “FEAR…..”, and on the back it said, “Thief of Dreams”. I was taken back about how true that is.
How many times in our lives have we had dreams, whether big or small, and never went for them because of fear. Those nagging little suggestions that talk you out of it. “It costs too much”, “You could never do that, what are you thinking”, “That is so not for you”, and so on and so on.
Today was my 2nd horseback riding lesson. It has been a few weeks so it was like starting over. A comment was made by a young lady standing by – “That horse is gigantic!” – at least that is what I heard. Well, I never thought Pocahontas was that large the first time. But when it came time to get on her I saw her “hugeness”. I put one foot in the stirrup and froze. Fear started to grip me. I thought, “What am I doing? I’m too old for this. I can’t even get on the thing.” I have the best instructor in the world. She is patient and kind. I started to cry – like a 2 year old! Then I thought of the crazy things the Lord had gotten me into: 10 days at a police academy when I was 51; climbed the Great Wall of China at a difficult location when I was 54. With those thoughts going through my head I simple pushed up and was told later I had a very graceful mount! Yes! I overcame my fear. Getting off however was a lot less graceful!
I swung my leg over the horse rather gracefully but when my foot touched the ground my jacket became snared on the saddle horn. I simply boosted myself up a little, undid the jacket, and released my other foot out of the stirrup. This is when it turned into slow motion. “Ohhhhh nooooo”, as I not so gracefully kept going and plopped on my tailbone right in the dirt! It hurt, yes, and I laughed and continue to laugh. The good news is the soreness will go away and the bruise should disappear hopefully by next weeks lesson.
And the better news is I faced my fear and overcame it. That is success in my book!