She wasn’t born herself
she found herself
over a long
and treacherous road
and the more treacherous
the road became
the more of herself
Driving recently in Charleston I was growing more and more impatient with the combination of road construction, the traffic and not being able to find what I was looking for. I know that those of you who know me are howling with laughter and surprise about now.
Me, impatient while driving?
Perhaps why, many years ago when my son was barely two years old he yelled from his car seat in the back, “Bwow, da horn mommie, jus bwow the damn horn”
Hmmm…. Wonder where he might have picked up that attitude? Smile.
I named my first GPS Zelda. It was a compliment to F. Scott Fitzgerald’s beautiful, brilliant, but tormented wife, Zelda. It happened on a day when, early in its creation the navigation system I was using, you know the really old ones that used to mount on the dashboard, kept telling me to turn left when there was no left available. The navigation system, which was a novelty at the time, seemed to me, on that day, like Zelda, brilliant, gifted, “extroidinaire” but deeply confused. That was many years ago, but the name stuck and I have used it for every navigation system since.
Anyway, as it was pointed out to me, the “road” on this particular journey was not long, nor was it especially treacherous. Well, there were some insanely deep trenches and lots of orange barrel confusion, but, in truth, no, not treacherous, I guess. Just highly frustrating. Added to that, there was Zelda. She was telling me to go one way. Meanwhile, my navigator, my love, with the best intentions in the world was pointing out the impracticality of Zelda’s recommendations (including the non-existence of the store we were looking for).
As for me, I was on a mission, getting from point A to point B in the most efficient manner possible. I was eager to return home and begin lunch prep. But, my mission was being challenged. First by the craziness of the path itself and then by Zelda, and finally by Christian’s. I was overwhelmed by the “help” being offered. I snapped, first at Zelda, and then at Christian, who was surprised by my reaction.
It wasn’t until we arrived at our destination, which happened to be a liquor store, yes, we are on vacation, that it all came to light. As soon as I “found” what I was looking for, put the car in park and walked inside, I was completely fine, stress gone. Christian, on the other hand was still, or rather now, not only confused, but stressed. How could I let something as insignificant as traffic spoil a perfectly lovely outing? Walking into the store, the man at the counter greeted us in typical southern fashion, “How ya’ll doing?”
“Well,” I said, “I am great, but I was driving. Better ask him.” pointing to Christian. The kind man nodded knowingly. “Want to just stay here the rest of the day?” He pondered, with a sympathetic glance at Christian. I laughed. “Probably a good idea.” I said, looking at Christian. “We could start at the front of the store and work our way back. At least we would both be relaxed when we left!”
This is oft times what happens.
We are trying to change, alter, amend, or escape. We have a mission, a goal; the picture perfect outcome, if only everyone and everything would cooperate. But they/it/circumstances don’t or wont or can’t.
And then, returning home I read the beautiful poem above.
The “road” is not always smooth. Sometimes it turns to the left when we expected to go right. Sometimes construction slows us down or temporarily blocks our way. Sometimes it takes longer to get where we thought we wanted to go. Sometimes.
What I discovered on this outing was that we all react differently to our own perceived obstacles. Our “triggers” or challenges may not be the same as those we share space, time or love with. The key lies in uncovering what stops us, what holds us back. And learning how to recognize those obstacles in relationship to the world, what the “road” throws at us
Turning “treachery” into beauty simply means changing our view point. When we become open to the possibilities and not tied to imagined obstacles we grow, we see, we learn, we love.
We can either lose precious moments, stopped by frustration, disappointment or sadness. Or, we can expand, soften, smile. The bumps and delays will always be there, how we see them is everything.
I am blessed to have Christian, now my fiancé. I am also blessed with the sometime technically challenged “Zelda”. I wouldn’t want to travel without either of them.
No one travels alone, not even in the greatest of moments. Reach out to me. Tell me your story.
You can download your gift here, or set up a free 30 min appointment to share your journey with me.
I look forward to hearing about your adventures.