Pawns in King Solomon’s Court

I have much on my mind this day, and the words seem stuck in my head as though they’re struggling to make it out of their tangled maze – though the results they dread. Children are a gift from God above. They’re given to us for whatever reasons He has seen fit. As we go through the motions of our lives, the little ones are often caught in the crossfire of mixed emotions and childish games. These little people have their very own thoughts and feelings though and are not meant to be used as pawns to cause pain to those we see fit to harm.

King Solomon of the Bible told the story about the selfishness of human beings who look out for their own best interest, rather than for the best interest of the child. We’re to guard them with our lives, hold them up to the highest esteem and keep them safe while they follow their own dreams. As parents we ought not to put them in a situation where they must make a choice to love one more than the other. There is naught that breaks my heart more than to watch the actions of a child who is so confused by the situation they believe in order to love their father, they cannot love their mother.

It would be the same feeling if the situation was reversed and a misguided child was under the assumption that in order to love his mother, he had to abandon his father. As parents it is our responsibility to love our children unconditionally and with a consistent nature so that they feel secure enough they know they don’t have to choose. I imagine myself in the shoes of the kings court….ready to sacrifice the child to the afterlife..in order to prevent them from being used as a tool to cause pain. I’d rather give up my own life and sacrifice my state of happiness than to make my children choose that which they should have no business choosing. They’re only children with very little thought of the future and have only a small idea of what they’ll be losing.

Children are not meant to make major life choices. Hence the reason why we’re not legally able to vote until we’re 18. They’re not capable of choosing what is the best for them and the remainder of their lives when they’re under the age of majority. This is the reason why children under the age of 15 or 16 are not able to drive at all and even once they do reach a given age, they must be supervised by an adult. We have to hold them up and make the right choices FOR them until they’re able to do so for themselves. It is so sad to me that grown people use children to seek an advantage over another. I didn’t choose to bring babies into this world to mother just so I could use them as pawns in a twisted game of chess. We’re adults supposedly….who should do what is best.

Until next time friends

~Peace

TLT

Prose….On Judgment

As you sit on the sidelines of my life blinded by what you perceive

And ignorant of all you do not know

You dare to pass your judgment, critical of the choices made

That have nothing to do with you.

 

When looking back on your life and decisions you have made

Can you sit there honestly, knowing all you know now

And say you never made mistakes?

 

As you sit on the sidelines of my life, blinded by the love you feel

And ignorant of all the critical errors, you dare add shame to the mix

As if it is suddenly your duty to lay waste with your verbal landmines

 

Look back at your own life, I dare you to peak

Take a look at all that was said and done, that caused such family strife

Would you like there to be fingers pointed

At a time when you felt your life was so bleak?

 

The lessons learned in this lifetime are earned by pain and joy as well

But please do not feign to sit there and judge my own personal hell

As if you know it or have seen firsthand

When all you have seen is the outer shell….

 

~TLT

Try your Best…Is a Farce (RANT)

Allow me to play devil’s advocate for a minute if you will. How many times have you been told to just, “try your best”, or any variation thereof? You are working your tail off to accomplish something, and someone decides that you need some motivation and informs you that all you need to do is give it all you have. As if putting every ounce of energy into this particular task will somehow, magically, make it work where it did not before.

You could spend days, weeks, months, or even years trying to accomplish this particular feat to no avail. All of your energy, time and focus has been in an attempt to make your life work better or run more smoothly, and yet you find yourself frustrated with the results. Did you ever play team sports in school? Let’s put it in terms of basketball. You stand on the free throw line day after day, practice after practice and no matter how you position your hands, no matter where or how far apart you place your feet and no matter how much coaching you receive – the ball will NOT enter the basket. Did you try your best? I bet you did! Yet, for whatever inane reason, the ball refused to make the sound you were struggling desperately to hear.

You tried hard, then you tried harder and you did the best you could with what you knew and with what you’d been taught but it simply was not enough. Sound familiar? There are some things in life that are just not meant to be or, on the flip side of that coin, there are some things in life that are inevitable. Telling ourselves and others that they only need to work a little harder though, is a farce. In my mind it’s right up there with participation medals. If you are not talented enough to place yourself or your team on the podium then why should you receive a medal? This is teaching our children especially that even if you did NOT try your best, you still get an award. Is that the way it is in the real world? Nope!

As I just pointed out, there are times when your best is not good enough. It happens to the majority of us, so why do we insist on putting ourselves through the misery of thinking that if we only try harder it’s going to change everything? It’s not. Get over it. Which leads me to my next point. You did the best you could with the tools that you were given is another bit that grates my nerves slightly because it’s almost like making an excuse for bad behavior in adults.

Last I checked, we all have this thing called FREE WILL. This means that we make choices and although they may not be all bad, we certainly make the choice between doing what is right or not and then, here’s the kicker – generally speaking there are consequences for our actions. Make your decisions and stick to your guns, but remember that there is nobody to blame but yourself for how it turns out. Part of being an adult means owning your own mess. Sure, we all make mistakes. Lord knows I have made PLENTY!

Mistakes are funny things though you see! If you have an accident because you turned down a wrong way street, it was a one time thing and therefore a mistake. The next time you drive by that street you will remember that you had an accident there and not repeat the behavior. Lesson learned. On the other hand, if once again you drive down the same one way street and have an accident, it’s no longer a mistake. This is an extreme example of course but you get the idea. We make errors in judgement that cause us pain usually and these are called MISTAKES. Acting out the same behavior over and over again, despite knowing that it’s going to lead to pain – this is no longer a mistake. It’s a behavior over which we have FREE WILL to either cease or continue. To say that you did the best you could with the tools you were given is an excuse.

*RANT OVER

Until next time friends…

~Peace

TLT

Time and Choices

Apparently, I have a lot to say today since the words appear to be flooding out of my mind and onto the screen so here’s a rarity for me…TWO posts in a day that are not just about running! 🙂

Time and choices

Such simple, ineloquent words and yet they hold so much meaning. I remember when time seemed to stand still. When every minute felt like an entire day had taken place. Now it seems that every day is slipping through my fingers at warp speed and I cannot slow it down. It is scary to think that I am now ‘middle aged’ in lived years despite the fact that I feel as though there is still so MUCH I still need to learn!

My grown children now have children and I yearn for their presence in my life. I also yearn for a certain type of silence. Not the silence of angry words recently spoken. Not the silence of an empty house or sleeping children, rather a silence of the mind. A space in my life where the busy-ness fades and I think of nothing really and yet thoughts race through my mind with haste.

I remember with a pained heart the mistakes of our youth, though take them back I would not because they are what lead me to you. There are so many choices to be made and things left to be done and it reminds me everyday that although we are separate peoples, we are all affected by each and every one. It somehow makes me think of Robert Frost, a Road Less Traveled:

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

There are choices to be made and the consequences we shall not know until such time as we wander back on that road of so long ago….and even then, as our memories fade we know not which choice we ‘should have’ made…

 

Anniversaries

An anniversary is so much more than simply a date on the calendar and when I hear people say that they married their best friend I wonder.

I wonder how it is that one can be just a best friend to someone who sees you at your very worst and loves you even though it hurts. I wonder how it is that one can be just a best friend to someone who sees you at your very best and loves you beyond life long tests.

I used to be envious of those couples who seem so in love whenever I saw them out and about but then I remembered what goes on behind closed doors is shrouded in clouds.I wonder how someone can love me for who I really am, if even I don’t know who that person is. I wonder how someone can love me through the good and the bad, when sometimes it seems that bad is all there is to be had.

It seems to me that saying one is married to their best friend may be undercutting the height to which love transcends. Marriage must transcend it all through the thick and the thin; through the times of financial struggle and times of ease; through the times of illness and of health. Yet those are only words we speak because when the line is drawn in the proverbial sand, you have to make a choice as to which side of life you will stand.

There are no easy answers and no instructions to follow, whether you are flying high as an eagle or drowning in a pool of sorrow. How will you manage to hold true to your words when they’re left tasting bitter on your lips? Why would you want to leave the person who steadies your emotions with just a hand on your hip?

A decade plus of marriage surely must show you how much you truly do not know this person you have married for better or for worse. Almost two decades of communication between the two surely must indicate that there is so much left to learn. There are choices to be made daily. That’s right I said, there are choices that have to be made – daily. As a wise woman recently said, life is all about choices and when we fail to make a choice that is a choice in itself.

Being married to another person is a study in patience, understanding and stamina to name but a few. When I am out among the trees, I am reminded of the likeness between my love of running and that of marriage.

There are hills to climb and as my friend Doug once told me, you are fighting yourself climbing those hills. Just go with the flow, he said, in his infinite wisdom. Take smaller steps and don’t work so hard. Being married is that way when every step feels like quicksand trying to pull you under to flounder in your misery. Quicken your steps, lighten the load and before you know it you feel as though you are once again floating along effortlessly.

I ask God to help me bite my tongue and guide my words daily. You see, some degree of faith in a power greater than me is necessary to trudge my way through when times are tough and the going is slow. There are things in this world I believe that only He knows. We make the plans but he sets the path and once again this is similar to running a race. We make plans to complete this race or that. We follow our plans and aim for a successful conclusion but sometimes there are lessons to be learned in the falling down and failing.

Anniversary is but a simple word that really means so much more….

As in Life

We’ve all heard the naysayers, asking questions and implying that we are somehow on the fringes of society, or that we are, for some reason, running from the demons in our lives. I say, we are all, every single one of us, running from something. Some of us just choose to run toward these things as we struggle to cope and deal with all that life throws our way. Did you lose your job? Lose a loved one? Lose your mind? Struggle with debt? Struggle with your relationship? Running offers a sanctuary in our own minds from the daily struggle. There’s a place you go as your feet beat out a steady rhythm, which transcends this realm of constant thought beating against your head.

How about these questions: Do you love to run? Love to watch the sunrise over the horizon, all pink like the body of a flamingo? Do you love the way the breeze cools your body and your mind as it caresses your skin while you run through the trees smelling of cedar? Do you crave the feeling of the burn of muscle and the drip of sweat down your head and back, cooling you as you steadily move along through the tall grass? Do you love the peace that comes eventually, whereby there’s no thought at all? This place that we seek is within our own minds and yet not at all. It is so abstract to the casual observer that it sounds odd to the ear, but it is there my friends, it is there.

It is there where we know that we will get out of this run exactly what we put into it. It is there where we are able to untangle the wicked webs that try to snare us into thinking that we cannot do what we came to do. Running really is a metaphor for life. You work hard and push your body through that short, yet physically tough workout and you realize with a start whatever the problem was, that you thought you had encountered, is really not that complicated after all.

You set out on a 30 mile training run, as I did yesterday in preparation for the 100 I WILL accomplish in 3 weeks and the demons awake. It’s too cold and we didn’t sleep well at all. There’s no way you can make it another 100 miles. Everyone out there at that race will be faster so why do you even bother? I took that little demon, shoved him into a tiny little box and sealed it shut. With each mile I continued to put one foot in front of the other I made that box smaller. As I reached 10 miles, the negative thoughts were silenced. This is the way of life! You just keep moving on and trying to make it through until one day you realize, you no longer hear all the negative.

People will tell you it cannot be done. People will say that you should not do it for this reason or that. They will be adamant that you are wrong and they are right. You are selfish and self centered for spending so much time training for an event you will not win or receive a financial gain for completing. Some will try to beat your down with their own personal demons, pushing them at you in an attempt to keep you small. Running shows us that we CAN do whatever we set our mind to. You want to run 13 miles? Fabulous! Get out there and practice! You want to run 26 miles? That’s great too you know what it is you need to do…..run!

Does practicing more mean that it will hurt less right away? Nope! Life just doesn’t work that way. What it means though is that you will get better at it. You will get better at shutting down the naysayers and the people who don’t want to do anything so think you shouldn’t either. This is what running long has taught me – though it’s still a work in progress. You can tell me I shouldn’t, tell me how bad it is for me and how selfish I am, but until and unless you can show me another way to find peace in my mind as well as a very healthy body….this is part of who I am. It’s not ALL I am, for I am so much more…..

Until next time my friends

~Peace

TLT

 

Insomnia and Compartmentalization…..

As I laid myself down to sleep about two hours ago, I had a thought that I had forgotten to write today as I had made a commitment to do. Alas, I thought! I will just have to write twice tomorrow. HAH! Instead, here I sit unable to sleep in a silent house and I BLOG…

My chattering monkey mind would not quiet and one of the thoughts that kept rolling through was that it was 3 weeks ago today that I crossed the finish line at Brazos Bend 100 with some of the most amazing people there running alongside me and even more waiting at the finish line. What I realized is that there are hours of time that I do not recall at all during those 29 hours and 58 minutes.

My friend Doug had told me that it would all disappear and leave nothing much left but the finish and I had thought that there was no way my mind could possibly FORGET such an epic tale. I spent the better part of something like 6 hours and 45 minutes, give or a take a few, with my friend Mike….SIX HOURS only 3 weeks ago and yet I recall very little about those moments. The brain is an amazing thing is it not?

I spent even MORE time with my great friend John and the only thing I have left in my mind are the sneaky little snapshots he took of me looking grumpy! That particular moment probably would have escaped my recollection as well….except for the photograph he took and posted with me looking decidedly unhappy. I do remember scolding him because he said he sent the picture to his wife….I told him that at least he could’ve warned me so I could wave or something! Funny!

My feet are pretty well healed and I am a toenail shy at the moment but for the most part – the body is close to 100% back to ‘normal’. Not quite there but certainly closer than it was 3 weeks ago when I had to use a granny walker to even move!! That will NOT happen again until I am somewhere around the age of 95!! The granny walker that is….

The brain, as I have learned through my studies, and now with more personal experience, is a wonderful computer / organ with the ability to wipe away all the pain you KNOW for certain you felt because pain is not something you simply forget. And yet, I really do not remember the pain per se, rather there is just the knowledge there that I WAS in pain. How does it do this? I would love to complete research on this topic!

There are some who subscribe to the whole idea that we are simply not meant to know the ins and outs of everything and sometimes it is better to not ask WHY. For me, however, I thrive on the unknown, on the questions that remain unanswered,  and sometimes it gets me into trouble with those who really wish I would just hush. Unfortunately for them, and tonight for me as well since the monkeys in there will not cease with their endless chattering, I don’t do well with being told what to do.

Yeah, yeah….I know! We all must at times take orders or what have you. Allow someone the privilege of thinking that they control the situation and in turn, controlled what it was you thought or did. It is not something I am very good at however! I am good at asking questions and if there are no answers readily available – I will find them!

The other thing on my mind is that although I AM almost healed, I am not quite there and that’s what scares me. I have things planned, races to attend and PR’s to attain……but if my body does not heal soon – like in the next 2 weeks TOPS….my attendance at the next event will be seriously in doubt. You see, one of the things that motivates me is EVENTS…

Racing events generally my goals, but it can be any type of event where I have to plan something, then follow through with the execution of the plan and bring it to fruition. It helps me stay focused and remain accountable to myself for my fitness goals. Right now I feel like the next 12 weeks of my training are truly in limbo and that is a dance I don’t like much….the limbo. I do have some other irons in the fire, so to speak, but none of which have anything to do with my fitness.

That may not seem like a big deal to some but to me, my personal level of fitness is a pretty big deal. If I had RAN today….I’d be sleeping right now. If I had ran today….I would not be sitting here with my tummy growling because it became accustomed to me eating basically as often as I wanted to…..while I was training. I can’t eat like that normally. I would be able to pass for the sibling of Shamu if I did!!

I only partly jest! 90% of the women in my family are heavyset women. With my stature, any amount of weight that is not muscle or some semblance thereof does not look attractive in the least. Love handles? Where did that phrase originate? There’s nothing lovely about having fat poking over the top of my jeans…..ugh! Okay, that’s a topic for a different blog or maybe not at all.

Apparently I am TIRED because I have digressed considerably from my original ideas so I suppose, dear reader, you can consider this the free-write of an insomniac who has a tendency to go off on these little tangents….Who am I kidding though really – I go off on tangents even when I am NOT tired!! I hope some of you who actually know me found some humor in that!! I sure did! I almost had a chuckle at my own expense…but I didn’t want to laugh too loudly and wake the girls who are all snuggled in their beds thinking about the first day back at school tomorrow after the very LONG Christmas break they had.

Okay…there it is…some of what was keeping me awake at least and now it is 4 minutes until Monday, January 5th and I have successfully written today! I shall post before the clock strikes midnight for sure! This reminds me of New Years Eve counting down the last few minutes with the youngest 2 of my brood!! Hah! Okay……..posting now

Until next time friends……

Peace