Watt's Well

Room to Be, Space to Create

Category: Life Lessons (page 2 of 2)

Hanging High

Sometimes you just hang hammocks. And only sometimes do you fall.

I remember being at my Precious MawMaw’s house when I was five or six. I was out in the big yard with the lone peach tree and the tall pines. My clever MawMaw had gotten someone to tie up a simple rope hammock between two of the pines most likely in hopes her grandbabies would enjoy it. This particular summer day I was outside with my bleach-blonde-chubby-cheeked brother and my Aunt Donna, my mama’s younger cousin. I was timid at first to get on the hammock, I was scared I might loose my balance and flip over, just like that one dreadful encounter with the tire swing. Seeing my timidity, Aunt Donna sat down to encourage me to join her. Since the hammock held her, I bravely joined her. No sooner had I sat down than my butt was sore from hitting the sandy root ridden earth. A bit petrified but all the same consoled by my aunt’s “ole poor thing” followed by her big hearty laugh, “You alright!” we brushed ourselves off. And no lie it was laughed about the rest of the day.
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The other night, I was hanging what I like to call “fancy hammocks” with my baby brother. And no sooner than we thought we were smart as we could be for our damn good engineering, we were humbled. I lay flat on my behind laughing so hard my belly hurt. I didn’t know whether to get up off the porch floor or just lay there for a bit, fearing I might possibly had broken or injured something. I quickly realized falling at my age is a bit different than falling at five. I was sore for a week. However, I haven’t laughed that hard in a long time, and was happy to have a story between me and my baby brother.

Moral of the story: Quit hanging hammocks it ends up in a sore ass. NO, wrong! Because let’s just be honest, there is the kid in all of us that wants the sensation of flying or of floating- to conquer gravity, to be brave enough to let our feet leave the ground. So moral of the story: keep hanging hammocks.

Don’t give up when your ass hits the floor. After a big hearty laugh (possibly preceding a good cry), get back up! Invest in people again, love again, aim for a goal again, take a risk again, just hang another hammock. It’s worth the experience because nothing is ever wasted.

Yesterday I hung a slightly tangled hammock over the water. I let you know how it pans out ūüôā

Its complicated…

A relationship status Id never post in a thousand years on the blue and white screen of Facebook. Actually, I very eagerly did not fill in “relationship status” section when prompted. I don’t want people knowing how available
(or not) I am.

Last night I was watching This is where I leave you, a film worth redboxing with a side of Chinese food and a glass of wine. The main character played by Jason Bateman claims he doesn’t do complicated. However, when unexpected things take place in his life, life becomes exactly what he strove for it not to be. A complicated mess. With this epiphany seeping into his soul, he realizes that it is just the reality of life. There are complications all around but it is how we respond to those that either frees us or causes us to create our own prisons.

This resonates with me. I was in a committed relationship for two years and I thought it was complicated, but it wasn’t…it was just hard. The complications that did arise were things to be fixed and worked out. Solve the problem.

Now I take a deep breath in and admit this life in the here-and-now is a bit complicated. Relationship status, community, work, what I desire: It’s complicated. So instead of being thrown into a whirlwind of anxiety, how about just having a cup of coffee and breathing it out. Things are rarely neat and tidy so why try to force it? Why not be honest with where I am, and then let things roll as they roll. Sure there is a time and place for analyzing and decision making. But why so often are you and I premature about doing those things? Live a little in the mess. Hurrying to make a decision sometimes robs us of the richness exploring the present can bring. Transformation is often birthed out of the exploration.

Someone in my life is an addict. He has been since he was a little boy. Recently he found himself back in the hospital. After going to visit him, I was baffled to see how what he was hungry for was honesty and realness. He didn’t want to have to explain how he got where he was. He didn’t want pity. He didn’t want someone to get him out of the hole he was in. He just wanted to tell his story. His life right now is complicated. But it’s his story, his journey. And in so many ways he cannot escape the complicated right now. He has to remain in it for a bit. In the messiness he has met people he would never have met before, a music producer, a affluent magazine editor, and so on. In the messiness he is still alive. I know this is a bit extreme. But we don’t expect an addict to just quit. We expect the journey. And the journey isn’t simple.

What about us? Can we truly be freed in the midst of life’s complications? I think it will be one of the most liberating experiences for our soul.

So have a cup of coffee. Settle in the complicated and don’t allow it to take you over. And now…what do you see?

February’s 10

It’s been a while since I have written. And I feel like much has taken place. Snow days, sick days, joys of life and aches of life. ¬†There is much I could write out here and feel like I could breath easier but for now I’m going to hit some highlights from the month of February. ¬†Emily Freeman invites her readers to join her each month in writing the ten things I learned in [insert month]. ¬†Check out her blog if you get a chance. It is what inspired me to start blogging again.

So here is what I learned…no matter how simply silly some of these may be.

1. I thrive in the South, and would possibly die living in the North.¬†We have been having the craziest winter in the Carolinas that I have ever experience. right before Valentines day we got around 6 inches of snow and the city completely shut down. Though it was a welcome break from the busyness, I was antsy by day three. Snow is pretty, but I’m okay only catching glimpses of it not living in it.

2. I’m an Ambivert.¬†After years of trying to understand if I’m introverated or extroverted…I think I’m starting to understand. I’m a confusing mix. I desperately need time with people to be rejuvinated. However after a few days without time to myself to do my thing with no one else around, I become rather irritable and exhausted.

3. The internet can be helpful and entertaining, but also can be one of my crutches and life sucking distractions. Need I say more?? I realized I should be paying more attention to my surroundings rather than cyber reality.

4. Livestrong’s My Plate app is absolutely amazing.¬†It’s really helped me to set healthy goals as far as my eating and exercising goes. ¬†Calories are important when you exercise, but so are the quality of those calories.

5. Shame and guilt are two different things.¬†According to Dr. Brene Brown (who is so amazing in her own ways), guilt is saying ‘I did something bad’, while shame is saying “I am bad’. There is a big difference, yet so often we shame ourselves thinking that it is healthy guilt.

6. It is hard to not shame myself and others.¬†Negative self talk is something I really struggle with. It is in times of struggle and hurting that it becomes easy to excuse shame’s words. When shame is telling me to hide in my mess and be overcome by it, courage is saying share that shame might not have the last word.

7. Goofy is good.¬†I’ve really enjoyed just cutting up with the people I work with. Mind you we get the job done as we laugh. I also enjoyed laughing and playing with my significant other this month as well. Its worth the risk to open up this side of myself. Laughter truly is healing and refreshing to the soul.

8. I enjoy lifting weights.¬†My lovely told me I’d enjoy it, but I guess I had to be convinced. In my trek to gain some weight, I found that lifting weights (supplemented with a good diet) can be helpful.

9. Schooled by Love.¬†A good friend of mine wrote an article on love in relationships and ministry a few years back. I pulled it out and dusted it off. I needed the reminder of real love. One of my friends’ points in the article is that love does not disappear when rejected. If I love someone and that love is rejected by them and I get furious at them for rejecting my love, well then my love was just desire. It wasn’t love because my love always has to do with you, it is not selfish.

10. Vietnamese food is not spicy like I thought. I experienced the simple complexity of authentic Vietnamese for the first time this month. I was shocked to find that it has very subtle spices and that something can be sweet and spiced all in one bite.

Well there is my ten, rather late into March. Hope you enjoyed. Id love to hear what you learned this past month or even what you are learning currently. Drop me a comment!

7 years

(warning: brain dump)

I used to think Chai Tea Latte’s to be disgusting. ¬†Now I love them, and actually they are my preferred drink at the coffee shop up the road. ¬†A biology major once told me that every seven years we acquire new taste buds. ¬†Which could very well explain why some things we disliked as a child but love to eat as an adult. ¬†I’m sure we have to get over the mental block telling us not to attempt to eat something we once found gross.

I think I’m starting to understand a bit more about how I tick. ¬†Or maybe I’m just seeing right now how I perceive and thrive. ¬†I can’t look back and say how I am now is how I’ve always been. ¬†And I’ve always been one to get frustrated with, yet love personality tests all at the same time. ¬†Oh yea, I remember scoring pretty down the middle on some of those what side of the brain do you use most tests and a few personality quizzes.

Right now I can’t help but wonder if my perceptive and relational taste buds are going through some change. ¬†I need to be around others to feel I have purpose. And I need physical affection. I just don’t want that hug, I need it. ¬†Oh, you need to get past me so you put your hand on my back to let me know you are coming around me…I don’t mind, in fact I just felt valued. ¬†You are hurting? Well I cant fix you like I use to try but I know I can be as present with you as possible. I need to be seen for who I am. I need affirmation because I’m definitely my worst critic. I goofed again, I need grace after I admit I’m wrong. Because dissension breaks my heart. I need to be around others so I don’t get down, but when it’s been a long day I need you to let me unplug in silence.

I don’t feel like I’m the same as I was 5 years ago. ¬†I’ve shed some believes about some things and I’ve gained new ones. I keep evolving through each lesson I learn and through the interactions with God, people, and things around me. But I am who I am. I was built a certain way and that doesn’t change too drastically. But my awareness of who I am seems to change quite a bit. ¬†Or maybe it is just that I’m shedding those barriers that keep me from being me.

I saw someone write the other day. ¬†“I am who I am, if you don’t like it, too bad”. Bold statement. But can that be backed up. Or is it just a barrier to hide behind while no one sees the true you?

Im a work in progress. A person on a journey. One with a story. I’m a living being evolving and transforming.

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