If you know Eats, Shoots and Leaves by Lynne Truss, you will understand the title of this blog post.
My husband and I often catch clerks off guard because we are buyers, not shoppers. For example, we walk into the store, buy a laptop, leave, walk back into the store because we forgot to buy a chair, we buy the chair, and we leave again. We know what we want. We get it. We go back home.
Needless to say, I don’t get many invitations to hang out with the girls.
On this, the first day of Spring, I was thinking about renewal. The skeletal trees begin to bud. Tufts of green start to peek out of the once frozen ground. I don’t know about you, but I sure could use some renewal… renewal of my mind, body, and spirit.
If you’re going through hell, keep going. ~Winston Churchill
I chose this quote earlier this week. Ironically, nobody needs it more than me on this Wisdom Wednesday. Traumatic stress can be a real rollercoaster. Today I will ride it out, knowing tomorrow will be better. I just have to keep moving forward.
As a result of writing daily, I have come to the conclusion that it is time to start that book. (I actually have a few partially written books in my head, so I just need to get them “on paper” and completed.) My daily posts aren’t enough to satisfy my writing addiction anymore. So today’s post is brief, so I can begin working on my outline. [There! I said it. Now I have to do it.]
Shot with my iPhone 5S, using Noir filter, this was from my Dad’s horse collection. I lit from the left to contrast the dark head on the right, sandwiching the textured middle. Phoneography Challenge, the Phone as Your Lens, Week 3: Black & White.
Well I know it wasn’t you who held me down
Heaven knows it wasn’t you who set me free
So often times it happens that we live our lives in chains
And we never even know we have the key
from Already Gone by the Eagles,
songwriters Jack Tempchin & Robert Arnold Strandlund
It’s funny how many times we can hear something and not really hear it. When I heard these lyrics today (for the fifty-blue-millionth time), it struck me how true they were. It reminded me that often the only thing keeping us from realizing our dreams is the six inches between our ears.
What was the one experience that completely changed your life? What happened? How did it change your life?
I have several drafts I am working on for future posts, but there are just times I want to write about something else. I hit “inspire me” on WordPress today and the questions above popped up on my screen.
It instantly reminded me of something that happened several years ago. It certainly wasn’t earth shattering in itself, but it started a chain of events that have created my life path.
I was twenty-something, depressed, and felt stuck. My two young children were my universe, but I was overweight, married to the wrong person for me, and unsure of the career direction I wanted to take (among other things).
Due to my depression, insomnia was a constant problem. Television was one of the few things that would put me to sleep and because I didn’t have cable, I frequently fell asleep watching infomercials.
In the wee hours of one morning, a young Anthony Robbins was promoting his new program, Unlimited Power. I was fascinated that this go-getter described his earlier life much the way I would have described my own. My goal here isn’t to go into his work, but to point out that this was a turning point for me.
I couldn’t afford the program… or even his book, so I went to my local library and borrowed the book the next day. I could not read it quickly enough. Since then, I have been into self-help like some people are into shoes, or clothes, or cars. I began reading every self-improvement book I could find and eventually would attend seminars and join communities of people who were working on themselves. I believe this has created a quality of life that I would not have enjoyed had I not been channel surfing my whopping four channels that night. We never know how one little action will affect the trajectory of our lives.
I am certainly an advocate of dreaming big. If, however, you don’t create a plan the feels feasible to you, there is less likelihood that you will follow through. I have experienced this myself.
I have a great idea, yet it somehow the end result or the way there doesn’t really “fit” how I can see myself. At first I am enthusiastic, but as the plan unfolds I begin to fall back into patterns that feel more comfortable. For me, I have learned that I will accomplish more over time (and maintain it) if I stretch myself within the realm of what seems possible today… stepping out of my comfort zone rather than into the Twilight Zone.
Today, one week after my granddaughter’s first birthday, she took her first steps on her own. She has been standing on her own and cruising around furniture, but anytime someone tried to coax her to let go and walk, she would simply refuse. Today, her mother “caught” her walking across the dining room. I joked that maybe she had been a “closet walker.”
It reminded me of when my own children were little and I was teaching them to swim. I remember other parents at the pool begging, scolding, or trying to reason with their own children to let go of the side, go under water, or jump into the pool. My style was to simply stay within arm’s reach and let them explore whatever felt comfortable. None of them were afraid of water. All of them learned to swim at a young age. And I didn’t push. I simply let them do what came naturally.
They all love water. I think it is partly because I loved water and I just let them be around it in whatever capacity they felt comfortable. Now I believe getting out of our comfort zone is good for us, but sometimes it just takes baby steps.
“When the student is ready, the Teacher appears.” ~attributed to Buddha, Mabel Collins
Evidently there is some debate over where this quote and others similar to it originated. This is my favorite version and it has proven to be true for me time and time again. If you are stickler, you can check out the controversy here.
It’s just another Wisdom Wednesday.