Swimming…

ellen-dory-finding-nemo-2__oPtDuring my post-op recovery, I’ve probably watched 50 movies, some more than once…some more than twice. While I know there aren’t too many people reading this, I’m still embarrassed to admit how many times I watched Finding Nemo. It’s one of my favorite movies, not just animated, but all movies. And I LOVE Dory. Okay, I love Crush too, but that’s another topic for another day.

Let’s face it, Dory has issues and lots of them. But she’s warm, and sweet, and loyal, and, despite her issues – I guess her short-term memory loss could even be considered a disability – she doesn’t quit. She just keeps swimming.

Maybe I watched that movie multiple times because my subconscious was trying to tell me something in a kind way, instead of bashing me over the head because I’m too stubborn to take subtle hints. Maybe I was supposed to watch these animated creatures have things they love taken away, and struggle, against seemingly insurmountable odds, to regain some of what they lost.

Their journey is wrought with problems and adversity, but, despite dangerous challenges, they meet amusing characters and engage in compelling adventures along the way. They learn things about themselves and begin to question all the things they thought were true, the way they were certain things were supposed to be. They learn how to have fun.

Perhaps the most important lesson learned was that of letting go, learning to trust themselves and those around them. When we have things taken away, our first instinct is to hold on tighter to whatever is left. In our panic, we cling with such ferocity that we sometimes cause what’s left to implode, and we’re left, ass on the ground, in the middle of that damn impervious forest.

But not Dory. She’s in the middle of the vast expanse of ocean, not knowing where she is or where she’s going – okay, she knows she’s supposed to get to P Sherman 42 Wallaby Way, Sydney, but it’s not like she has a map or a flashlight. Somehow she just trusts that she’s going to get there. Irregardless of all her issues, she finds the strength to hold Merlin up as well. Quitting is never an option.

So, despite the fact I’m not really sure where I am or where I’m going (it’s probably not P Sherman, 42 Wallaby Way, Sydney, but who knows?), maybe I need to take a few lessons from an animated fish. Perhaps I need to loosen my grip, not cling so tightly to what’s left, and trust that, somehow, I’m going to get where I need to be. Maybe, if I just keep swimming, I’ll make it through…

Just+Keep+Swimming365badgeSM

Hope

hope ave and change wayToday I received an invitation to submit a pitch for a blog. I know you’re thinking, “so what?” For me, it was huge. It gave me hope, something I’ve been sorely lacking these last several months. I realize the chance of them picking up this pitch and letting me run with it is pretty slim, but until I get that rejection email, there’s still hope.

Some people say that having hope is everything, while others say hope is your way of procrastinating – If you’re “hoping,” you’re not “doing.” I think I’m somewhere in the middle.  To lose all hope is to stop completely, to curl up in that tiny ball in the corner of the room and let the blackness envelope you. However, doing nothing but hope is the equivalent of standing around waiting for something to happen.

Like the picture above, I believe that hope brings about change. If you lose hope, you lose the ability to not only propel yourself to change in the direction you wish, but you tempt fate to make those choices for you. And, as we know, fate isn’t always kind in its choices.

So, I will hope that these folks think they’re reading the best blog pitch ever, but I won’t count on it. If not, I’ll hope for the next thing that will lead me through to the change I desperately seek.

 

Wildcard

packers-3725“The game of life is not so much in holding a good hand as playing a poor hand well.”
– H.T. Leslie

 As I settle in to watch my beloved Green Bay Packers play their NFC Wildcard game, I think of how nice it would be if life dealt us a wildcard once in a while – a Mulligan we could take when we played a hole (situation) particularly badly.  I can think of a few glaring instances where that would have come in very handy. Now comes to mind!

Sadly, we get no wildcards and very few second chances. We make choices, and sometimes it works out, sometimes not.  When we find ourselves wishing for a wildcard, we’re not usually in the place we’d hoped. We’re looking at the hand we’ve been dealt and wondering how to play it when folding isn’t an option.

Unlike Green Bay, we’ve been given no game films to watch. Hell, we’re lucky we even know who our opponent is. But like Green Bay, we do have a playbook – a list of things that have worked in the past and things that truly need to be tossed in the shitter, never to be spoken of again.

We might not have a wildcard, but we can come up with a game plan. We suit up, take what’s previously gotten us into the end zone, break through the defensive-line, hang on to the damn ball, run like hell, and cross the goal line. Oh, yeah, then we get the beer!

Language

juggling-language-11

Had an interesting exchange on Facebook today regarding language. It evolved from a conversation I had with a Brit on Twitter a few weeks ago. What I learned today – that “moby” across the pond refers to a mobile phone and not a whale – would have made my original conversation much more productive, and I probably would not have appeared to be the typical American blonde.

Not only was it clarifying as well as amusing, it also got me thinking about language – how even though we technically may speak the same language, on far too many occasions, we misunderstand each other. This misunderstanding often hampers our progression through the quagmire in which we find ourselves. It bogs us down in our homes, our workplaces, online, even within ourselves. The words we choose and the way in which we choose to use them has a significant impact on the results of our communications.

How many times have we had a huge brannigan with our spouse/significant other/kids/friends other because of poor word choices? How many “Twitter Wars” start because people read something into a tweet that simply wasn’t there. (Hey, kids, with 140 characters, it’s amazing we haven’t all killed each other by now!) How many times has our resume been passed over or an interview blown because of a word written or a phrase uttered that was simply misconstrued by the person reading/hearing it?

Finally, how many times have we held ourselves back because of our internal dialog? Some of the words I say to myself I wouldn’t utter to my worst enemy. I guess that truly makes me my own worst enemy, so that previous sentence was a fallacy!  No surprise there. If we all went to jail for verbally abusing ourselves, they’d have to build larger prisons. It seems contrary to reason that we shouldn’t be able to understand ourselves perfectly, but we can’t…or maybe we just won’t.

I’m not saying we should don a cheerleader outfit and stand in front of the mirror with pom-poms waving, but, for Christ sake, we could allow ourselves to be real. We’re not the dumbest, ugliest, fattest, most worthless piece of shit to ever walk the planet. We’re also not the smartest, prettiest, skinniest, or best piece of shit either. We’re just us. And that’s okay.

The language we use should not be to admonish, but acknowledge. Admit we have some faults and work on them. Admit we have some strengths and celebrate them. The rest? Learn to laugh at it. Humor is the same in any language and will always get you through…