Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Ungaurd! Un-guard... On Guard?

I've been staring at the air, then compelled to sit at this keyboard, then I've glanced repeatedly all around me. I'm worried about nothing in particular. 

I'm alone. I'm scared, but not sure why. I have heart palpitations and a roller coaster ride happening in my stomach; there is no reason behind it. Some call this panic, but I'm not certain.

I logically know that all is well, yet, there is unease. I'm certain I'm not the only one who has been in this place. There's no reason for me to be a visitor of this paralyzed state of being. I don't like it. I don't want it. Yet, I'm here. 

I feel invisible cogs on an invisible wheel turning swiftly - as if it has influence over my future... yet, I'm powerless to change it. It's as if the air around me is blowing - swiftly changing my course, yet everything is eerily still. 

Something has moved. Something has changed. And the trigger effect, the chain reaction, just hasn't hit me yet. Is it good? Is it bad? Is it a little of both? I just don't know.

The rational person inside of me says, "You're just being paranoid." 

Yet, personal intuition says, "No. What you are feeling is the effects of real change from another person, making their own choice. This decision acts like a rock skipping across a pond and in time it will actually affect the air in your personal space. You felt this because change is indeed coming; prepare."

The irrational person simply wants to crawl in a corner and hide from the unknown. The present person reviews the events and decides she can't change a thing at the moment.

So, I log off and go downstairs to put the nervous energy, the unfounded worry into a workout, hoping to forget what has or hasn't just happened.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Reality Check

About this time of year I do a lot of reflection. It first started several years ago with the idea that "holy crap annual reviews at work are here!" 

Then that morphed into a one-on-one with myself. A Spring Cleaning reality check of know - how am I doing, so that I can be the best I need me to be, in order to be the best influence I can be to my family, friends, co-workers, employer - whatever the case may be. 

In short, I've learned that I can't possibly be the best person all those people need me to be, if I can't even be the person who I need me to be.

With this in mind, I thought I would pass along these two references. Each have helped me out a great deal in different ways (please click the links below and enjoy the words and thoughts of a couple really smart people). 

I also listen to Life Strategies by Dr. Phil about this time every year too.

"Becoming a Person of Influence" (by the way this entire book is good and worth the read).
"The Slight Edge" (summary)

Friday, May 18, 2012

Poetry Corner: Fun House

What really prevents us from seeing ourselves as we really are? 

Fun House

                  eyes enlarge by the smallest turn,
               a subtle nod can remove my chin –
         tricking my mind into thinking 
                           Picasso had his way with me;

                     mirror hopping – eyes only,
                     my best features turn against me
                     and my favorite things to hate become
                     beautiful –

                                (do I really see the truth of me?)

                                   within these walls
                                    can be manipulated…

By Diana M. Bateman

Friday, May 11, 2012

My F-Words

Fantastic   *   Fearless   *   Friend   *   Fortunate   *   Fighter

The F-word kept creeping up in my mind for several weeks... well, most of April and much of May...but it seemed to begin dissipating since yesterday, actually. 

But the F'n-this and F'n-that has been dominating my internal response to things. Thankfully I've been able to keep it internal. But it's been an internal persistent dwelling and contemplation of language I just really don't use. 

Earlier this week I was able to grab my brain, give it a good talking to and say, think of this entire situation differently, dammit! Dammit... now that's more like me. A D-word has a more satisfactory cacophony than an F does anyway.

So the situation doesn't really matter, it could be any situation, but my response to it wasn't doing me any favors. 

As a matter of fact, I ended up with a monster cold sore on my lip. The cold sore went hog wild on half my face in t-minus two seconds.

In efforts to actively try and change my attitude and reaction to the situation (because that's the only thing I really have control over anyway), I decided I needed new F-words. 

This decision was in an effort to try and add a positive spin to the... crud. Though the situation is truly F'd up, I am indeed physically feeling Fantastic. 

I am moving Fearlessly forward with my own personal goals. I have awesome Friends that support me in tremendous ways. 

Because of the Fantastic health, Fearless persistence and downright awesome Friends, I have the strength in me to continue on; continuing on in spite of opposition means that I am a Fighter in every sense of the word. 

So mentally when I think f-f-f-f-f it now comes out sounding like f-f-fighter! So there! Bring on the weekend!

Fantastic   *   Fearless   *   Friend   *   Fortunate   *   Fighter

Saturday, May 5, 2012

The Other Side of Las Vegas

In June 2002 my husband and I went to Las Vegas, Nevada for a brief weekend trip. And so the story begins...

I was walking from air-conditioned car to air-conditioned hotel to air-conditioned anything... I simply couldn't handle the heat and I didn't know why. One step in the heat, then I would vomit. 

One bite of food and then I would get the same reaction. It was horrid, to say the least. I pretty much stayed in the dark hotel room with the AC unit ramped high. 

We quickly decided to head home, and I think it was the morning we were going to leave that we went to breakfast. Well, Josh went to breakfast. I put food on my plate and stared at it, wondering how long it would stay down. I was so hungry that I eventually caved and took a bite, then two, then three then... RUN! 

While in the restroom, I was kneeling, practically face-planted in the water of the toilet bowl, gasping for air in between a mixture of dry heaves and a complete...unleashing. 

It was at the moment of the long awaited sixty-second relief with no vomit and actual breathing when a woman outside the bathroom stall spoke to me and asked, "Are you okay dear?" 

Then came my gasping labored lie of "uh-huh". She was so kind and didn't give up, as she offered, "can I get you some water?" In my selfish, embarrassed state I replied weakly "no, thank you". 

What the woman said next has remained fixed in my memory since that time. 

In an extremely heartfelt tone she said, "Ma'am, I know you are having a hard time in there, but you need to know that you are worth more than this. God loves you. You need to stop torturing yourself this way. I don't know you, but I do know that you are worth so much more than this. We were given food to feed the body and scripture to feed the soul. God loves you. I'll pray for you." 

All I had energy to utter at the time, between my labored breathing and still dripping mouth, while tears were now flowing was a  feeble, "thank you."

After this the woman left and a short time later my stomach settled and I was able to return to my husband. I relayed to him the story of what had happened and neither of us really knew what to think about that situation. 

Obviously the woman thought I was bulimic or something. There were several women who walked in and out of the restroom while I was in there; but only one asked if I needed help. 

This experience has really stuck with me though. Here's why I am sharing it with you:
  • This June I will be heading to Las Vegas for a conference. 
  • This June will make it ten years since that last experience. I am returning, fully intending on having a very different... less projectile vomiting...experience this go-around.
  • When the vomit monster hit me ten years ago, it was due to complications of how my body was responding to heat at that time. We also now know that Multiple Sclerosis was the culprit.
  • My life has become much better regardless of the presence of disease and seasonal heat.
  • This was a tremendous display of human kindness from one stranger to another who was apparently in great distress. 
  • Even though the stranger got the situation all wrong, her response was still perfect. 
It's the last two points I want to focus on here. A stranger could see that there was something wrong and did her best to help in the only way she knew how, which was to reaffirm that:
  • I'm worth more.
  • I am my own worst enemy.
  • What we do to or put into our body has consequences, which may indeed be all wrong for us, causing us great harm.
  • What we do to fuel our soul through this life is just as important as how we fuel our body.
  • Getting through this life may require reliance on another person's faith and effort on our behalf; even strangers.
  • God loves us.
Believe me when I say that I never imagined I would go to "Sin City" expecting to hear a stranger preaching in the name of Sunday to me; especially while vomiting in a bathroom stall and then having that experience stick with me for the rest of my life. 

But there you have it. She spoke absolute truth. I sincerely do believe that she prayed for me. How often do we leave situations when we can see that another is in need, yet we fail to share the essentials as noted above?

This is an excellent example of what drives and motivates me today. You see, I know now that I am indeed worth more. I'm tired of being  doubled over with the burden of being my own worst enemy. 

I am trying earnestly to really care about what I feed myself physically and spiritually, so that my body is as strong as it can be for what God wants me to do, to be. 

I need all within the sound of my voice and within reach of my virtual pen to pray for me; lending me strength and faith when I otherwise wouldn't have any. When all is said and done, I still know that God loves me - that's all that really matters anyway.

I'm so thankful that ten years ago I got to see the other side of Las Vegas. Thanks to a has made all the difference.