Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Biting The Bullet

I used to post bullet point blogs frequently. When my brain felt jumbled that seemed the logical way to sort it all out. I haven't written one in a while. Am I less jumbled? Well, not today. So, here we go...
  • My mom bought some Red, White, and Blue decorations for Memorial Day. They will probably hang until July 4, but that is A-Okay. We are NOT big decorators here, so I am talking about a plaque for the door and a wind sock, just in case you were picturing yard decorations and lights.
  • At dinner over a week ago, right after mom put the wind sock up, she said to me, "When I came home the wind sock was hanging off the roof, like it was holding on by its fingernails." That struck me as very funny. As in ironic funny. Do you ever have moments, hours, days, months when you feel like the entire country (maybe the world) is holding on by its fingernails?

  • That night I took the photograph above and then pulled the wind sock down.
  • It clung to the gutter. A bit of water caught its legs. As I yanked it down it occurred to me that maybe that is all it takes... people with initiative giving a good yank.
  • Last week, Jasmine's What If Wednesday question was this: What is your wildest dream? I wrote an extremely lengthy comment only to arrive at the conclusion that I have discarded my wildest dreams as I have journeyed through this migraine-filled existence. Perhaps the thing now holding me back from complete recovery is the lack of a dream. If you have nothing to reach for, aspire to, aim at... what are you?
  • I think I wrote here before that we can live more easily without hope than purpose. Purpose will keep us moving forward even when hope is gone. Or hanging by its fingernails.
  • Writing my novel gave me purpose. 
  • Revisions plague me.
  • The thought crept in (and continues to linger) that I am just not good enough of a writer to keep working at this project. What is the point? I read recently at Writer Unboxed that the writers who succeed aren't necessarily the most talented. They are the ones that don't give up. They get better by continuing to write and rework their story until it is good.
  • Is writing my wildest dream?
  • For years, my wildest dream was, after I found my way back to health, helping people who fell through the floor. I envisioned a website, houses, and creating an organization that didn't just offer a hand out but a help up. 
  • The problem? People with chronic pain and no tissue disorder suffer from emotional pain. 20% of the afflicted accept that diagnosis and get better. 80% insist on a surgery, pill, or Anything Else. 
  • The truth is that people don't want to clean out their emotional garbage. It is stinky and painful and HURTS to root around in that particular trash bin. Plus, it *seems* incomprehensible that broken relationships and/or emotional pain of any kind could result in very real physical pain.
  • On my HERE'S TO YOU post, Stephen T. McCarthy wrote in the comments that God spoke to him via his Inner Voice that morning. I know just what he was saying because that has happened to me. Back in 2008 God spoke to me one morning and told me that every single thing I was going through happened for a reason. It was the catalyst that would bring me to a career that would bring me more joy than I could possibly imagine. So, I needed to start meeting this journey with acceptance, rather than resistance.
  • I have been so-so with the acceptance vs. resistance concept. But, I BELIEVED that God had a Purpose for me. One that would bring me joy beyond my imaginings. Not long after My Idea (sound byted above) began to form.
  • Since Jasmine's blog and Stephen's comment I have been thinking a lot about my wildest dream and what God whispered into my ear. And I ask myself, "How can I help people who don't want to be helped?"
  • The answer became obvious. I can't. But, there are 20% who will say Yes. So, I need to spend some mental energy figuring out how to help that 20%.
  • And I want to spend time writing my novel. No, I don't think it is the Great Giver of Joy that God talked about, but I LIKE it. I will only improve with practice.
  • .... and that all leads to less time spent blogging. I can't spend hours every single day reading blogs and still accomplish these things. But if I stop doing that, the chances of my putting together weekly HERE'S TO YOU posts dwindles into impossibility. 
  • While HERE'S TO YOU gives me tremendous joy, I don't think it is what God was talking about either. And if subverting My Wildest Dream keeps me stuck in the land of migraines... this cannot be a good thing.
  • For a LONG TIME blogging gave me Purpose and I am beyond thankful that I started this site and met all of you. You are blessings.
  • In the name of pinpointing my Wildest Dream and my Purpose, I am not going to read daily. I will become more hit and miss with commenting. HERE'S TO YOU won't be weekly. It will be Whenever I Can Pull a Post Together. 
  • However, I am not disappearing. I am just going to better manage my time.
  • Like the wind sock, I was stuck. I am yanking myself down in an effort to be free and find my own flow with nature. As I write this, I see the wind lifting it and blowing through it. If a wind sock can be happy, I think mine is. It is fulfilling its Purpose.
  • I want to be like the wind sock.
Are you striving to live your Wildest Dreams? Are you willing to set aside or cut back on things that you enjoy to make it happen?


  1. Wow. A lot of contemplative thoughts in those bullet points! I believe in going for your wildest dreams. You have to go in though, realizing it's going to take time - maybe a really long time - before your dreams come to fruition. It's all about perseverance.

  2. I think you arrived at your own answer.
    Sometimes you have to cut back to do what is important and matters most.
    Don't worry about the eighty percent who don't. What can you, through God, do for the twenty percent. Because we don't need to reach all of the people. Just some.

  3. Now is my time to write, I decided that a few years ago. Writing had already been sidelined when daughter's illness threw everything off track. I had to find time when I could back then. But at some point, we have to say OK, this is the time! I'm taking it. Who needs sleep

    I've found the rhythm that works for me. If you want to try the WEP blogfests (if you have the time), Robin, they are short and can be written whatever way you want. That would kick your writing into gear and can be picked up depending on how your month goes. When you post here, we will come. Good luck!

  4. That certainly should be quite a load off your mind. Although many of those points require even more thought!

  5. >>... If you have nothing to reach for, aspire to, aim at... what are you?

    Stephen T. McCarthy.

    Well, ROBIN, you gotta follow your heart and see where it takes you. If you later determine that you'd taken a wrong turn somewhere, the good news is that you can always turn around, go back to that fork in the road, and take the OTHER path next time.

    You have my best wishes in whatever endeavor you pursue.

    Bless And Be Blessed.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

  6. Aw, now I want to be like the wind sock, too!

    You should only do things like blogging if you enjoy them. If they're taking time away from things you might enjoy more, stop blogging so much and go do those other things. I'll miss your blog's regularity but I'm sure you'll be back.

  7. Such a wonderfully thought out post, and it's touching! I think of course you should finish your book. I bet 98 out of 100 writers think like you were at one point, and they probably all wish they were the 2% who didn't have to... but you're right, you'll get to where you want to be, it just takes hard work. :) Nothing wrong w/hard work (or that good yank you described).

    I'm glad your windsock is happy now. :)

  8. I don't really hold onto wildest dreams anymore, knowing life goes in the most unexpected of directions. I follow my more practical ones, like: finish and publish this novel.

    It looks like you breathed new life into the windsock, with one small yank.

  9. My grandmother sent me this poem when I graduated:
    Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die,
    Life is a broken winged bird that cannot fly.

    Keep dreaming and holding on by your finger nails if you have to. And you're right, you can't help people who don't want to be helped. I finally decided that I do well to keep myself sane and on track, if I try to do it for everybody else, I'll just lose myself.

  10. Man, that was a lot of ammunition!

    IMHO, a blog, a job, whatever you spend your time on, has to be worthwhile to you. It doesn't have to always be working on/for a dream. Sometimes a smile is enough.

  11. ROBIN ~
    I just thought of something...

    Are you still planning to participate in BOTBs on the 1st and 15th of each month?

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

  12. Sherry ~ That is the truth. Right now my best hours of the day (morning) are investing in blogging and my book is being consistently placed on the back-burner. I just need to make adjustments.

    Alex ~ I also need to spend some time just thinking about how to make My Idea work again. Yes, the 20% are worth my effort.

    D.G. ~ I am still uncertain about my participation in the flash fiction. I really want to see how it goes bumping up my WiP to the top of my priority list.

    Andrea ~ Well, we shall see.

    StMc ~ I am not quitting blogging. I am just devoting my most productive period of the day to it. That will sometimes mean that I NEVER get to blogging, like right now there are days that I NEVER get to my novel. It is just a priority shift. So, I will still try to read some every day (later in the day) and post at least once a week. I am not sure how much you will notice in terms of my regular blogs. I think my HERE'S TO YOU feature will suffer most because I will be doing less reading (as in not every day and not everything that everyone writes). I will still participate in BOTB. In fact, I am trying something new this month. It is likely a one-shot deal, but I am curious to know if everyone loves or hates it.

    Briane P. ~ This was a difficult decision because I enjoy reading everything you guys write SO VERY MUCH. And I love doing the weekly HERE'S TO YOU feature. But, it has taken such a high priority that everything else in my life is suffering. I am living in a state of imbalance... and that never works out well. And you can be the wind sock. Just be aware of when you need a good yank!

    Rosey ~ This is the equivalent of a good yank. Time will tell if I turn out like the wind sock.

    Robyn ~ Well, right now I am going to do the same. I will actively work on revising my novel and actively think about how to rework my idea for helping people.

    Elizabeth ~ That was a lovely bit of wisdom from your grandmother. Thank you for sharing it here. Yes... this is me attempting to get on track!

    CW ~ I don't even bother loading the gun unless I'm using a full clip.

  13. It sounds like you've got a good plan in place! I wish you the absolute best in whatever dreams you go for- the wildest ones and the smaller quiet ones. =) The thing is to always just keep believing, even on the darkest days.

  14. If you can help 20% of the people you come in contact with, that puts you 80% ahead of 75% of most people over 60% of the time.

    Those are real statistics that I just made up!

    I told you about the friend who helped me weather a loss some years back.

    Once she told me that her goal in life was to make people's lives better (even just a tiny bit) through their interaction with her. I always thought that was a pretty cool ambition in a world where most people's goals involve stuff.

    I hope all your dreams come true, but I suspect that the things that will bring you the most joy will be the little things that you didn't even remember dreaming about!


  15. I know exactly what you mean!

    From the beginning of the year, I got stuck in the same sort of place where I'm barely hanging on and not knowing how to move forward. And you know, I'm discovering that the way to go is often to get out there and wait for the opportunity to reach you.

    Maybe that's all God's waiting for you to do. To spot the opportunity and grab it. Often He does the thinking for you, when it comes to the how to's and the when am I's.

    Whatever you find you need to do, I hope you find it blessed. x

  16. I think we all feel stuck at times, and your windsock analogy really puts it into perspective. For years, I've been trying to teach my son good time management techniques, though I've always been horrible at it myself. Now that you've taken some of the pressure off, I think things will be smooth sailing from now on.


  17. I should have used the bullet approach for today's post, because I really didn't know what to write about.

    Your post, however, makes perfect sense and comes full circle -- and even hinges on a metaphor. (And you question your own talent?)

    It's strange how we all approach writing differently. Writing a first draft plagues me. Revisions give me purpose.

    As for blogging, it has to be hit or miss for me. I can't get around to everyone's blog every day, and I can't write more a post more than 2x a week (except for First Impressions). You have to do what gives you joy and purpose, and just because you've done something one way for a long time doesn't mean you can't change. I think you already know about changing your life in a drastic way. It's okay to change the smaller habits too!

  18. I'll never look at a windsock the same again. Go and live your purpose and may it bring you that wild dream.

  19. It's funny you said that about the red, white, and blue for Memorial Day. When we took our flag down, my first thought was, "Can't we just leave it up, since 4th of July is just a month away?" I'm a pretty lazy decorator, too.

  20. Leandra ~ Rearranging my time has been good so far. By working on my novel every morning it the ONE THING that gets done every day... rather than the thing that gets skipped.

    LC ~ It isn't easy knowing how to help or the way to achieve it once you make a decision. It feels good to be thinking about it again, though.

    Misha ~ It is difficult to get back onto a schedule when you've been off of it (no matter the reason) or to establish a good one when you've been working a lousy one.

    Julie ~ I am only a couple of days into this, but I can already tell that working on my novel in the morning is far more productive.

    Dianne ~ I think you have figured out a good balance with your blogging and writing. My problem was that it was all out of balance. I could probably write more blogs than I am. It is the hours of Reading Blogs every day that was taking all of my writing time.

    Susan ~ I had to yank the poor thing out of the gutter again this morning. This time all of its legs were trapped in the water. Maybe there is an analogy there for people, too. We need to constantly evaluate our progress.

    Stephanie ~ Exactly. Besides, it is very patriotic:)

  21. To those of us who owe our blogs so much for helping us move forward in life, some times it's hard to decide to focus elsewhere. But it's always the right move to chase your dreams. We'll be here when you have time to post and in the meantime we'll be cheering you on. (Robin, this is Liza...posting anonymously...for today.)

  22. I lost Internet for a couple of weeks and it gave me a chance to do this. One afternoon I was so bored that I grabbed my notebook and just started writing in it. I ended up with an idea for another story. Sometimes it can be a good thing to disconnect and get our thoughts into perspective and look at our goals. Loved the post!

  23. Whenever I Can Pull a Post Together.... sounds like a plan.

  24. Hi human, Robin,

    I always cut back on things such as attempting to do a pawst, um post, as you might say. So many dreams and the main thing is to focus on the dream that is your priority. The rest should fall into place.

    An interesting pawst, um, post that had loads and loads and loads of stuff to contemplate. That's my pawspective....

    Penny :)

  25. God has a plan for you. A plan to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future...Jeremiah 29:11 Sometimes His plan differs from our own plans. Give it all to Him, and give God the reins to lead you.

  26. This comment has been removed by the author.

  27. HI, Robin....

    I feel exactly the way you do. WE must manage our time as best we can to achieve what will make us happy. Blogging is a HUGE part of my life, BUT there are times I pull away to regroup and do the things that need to be done. WE are ALWAYS here. The community is strong, understanding, supportive, kind, and CARING. WE want our blogger friends to be the successes they wish to be and to do whatever brings them joy and happiness.

    I always wonder what God's plans are for me. I have had SO many lives. I peak and crash. Then I pick myself up and start something new. Four years ago when my design business crashed, I turned to writing. I never expected ANYTHING like what I found. I had the passion, ideas, and will, but not the skills. In four years I learned them and continue to learn.

    Helping other writers gives me great joy as well. I enjoy giving back. It's part of our circle.

    DO what you need to do. Just don't disappear. You have a special gift. A sweetness that I hope you treasure, because we all do...

  28. "...writers who succeed aren't necessarily the most talented. They are the ones that don't give up. They get better by continuing to write and rework their story until it is good."

    Love this quote and I'm definitely still striving. I think I might be getting closer.

  29. Well, that was more like an overdose. I get what you're saying. I've said similar things in some of my posts, but I have a difficult time breaking from blogging. My summer plans are forcing me to reevaluate...but still.

    Regarding hope vs purpose. Personally I think internally hope is the force that drives any of us. Without hope we merely act on autopilot to get the days work done with nothing more to look forward to. Goals are the result of hope and the hope provides more meaning to the purpose.

    From the outside though, as far as other people are concerned, the purpose is mainly what matters. Our hope may spread to others around us and inspire them, but on the whole the people we deal with are mainly interested in the purpose we serve.

    The burger flipper may hope toward vacation time or a college degree and the purpose of the job is to get them to their goal, but the job is not their ultimate purpose. The guy waiting for his burger hopes that his burger is fixed right and the flipper has no purpose to him other to get his burger done.

    Your post has given me the thought that maybe a lot of the zombie stories metaphorically represent a world that increasing consists of people who are losing hope and the burning internal desire to find ultimate purpose only to become hopeless empty shells merely left with the purpose to survive.

    Sorry, but I'm rambling with my thoughts. Thanks for sparking the brain fire in my head. Maybe I need to write a post about this.

    Oh, and glad you'll at least still be doing the BOTB posts. We need you!

    What is the best short story ever written?
    Tossing It Out

  30. Liza ~ It's always the right move to chase your dreams. I think the problem is that this revising stuff is really hard and I have to MAKE time for it. When a story is driving me, I need to write it and I want to do it. Revising is work and I do my best work in the morning. That used to be my blogging time. Chilling with a cup of coffee and reading/writing. Now, I chill with my coffee while I work on my WiP. Blogging hasn't gone away. It just isn't getting the Best of Me right now.

    GG ~ When you unplug from the internet you will be shocked at how much you actually accomplish. Ha!

    Christine ~ I am not a JC fan, but that was a great bit of advice. There are plenty of people who take the safe course and fail spectacularly. So why not follow your dream?

    Blue ~ It is my plan for right now. So far, so good...

    Penny ~ Yes, you manage your time better than any of my dogs. Mine spends most of the day sleeping. She is a terrible time manager.

    Cathrina ~ Good advice!

    Michael ~ My life has started over several times, too. It's always a bit shocking, isn't it? I never would have thought I would be here right now. And I am so thankful for this supportive community.

    Marcy ~ Yes, I hold that idea close to my heart. There is nowhere to go but UP.

    Lee ~ Well, I am glad that I started a brain fire. Did you ever think you would be writing about zombies? No? Well, never say never. I don't know what my favorite short story is.... toughie.

  31. I happened to see a video of Sandra Bullock's speech to the graduating class of a New Orleans high school this year. Her final instruction to them was "find your joy". It sounds like you're going in search of yours. Bon Voyage.

  32. What a terrific well-thought-out post, Robin. I know it wasn't easy for you to come to this conclusion, because it's the same one I had to make. There comes a time when we have to ask ourselves if we're bloggers who write, or writers who blog. Where we devote the most time provides the answer.

    Good luck!

  33. I've been pursuing my wildest dreams for years now, but sometimes I feel like Frodo who will never reach my destination because of the many obstacles in the way, both physical and mental. It's good to have purpose -- that's what gets me up in the morning. Having hope is what pushes me to my limits, though.


You can now add YouTube videos in your comments by copy/pasting the link. AND/OR you can insert an image by surrounding the code with this: [im]code[/im]. In the case of images, make sure that your code is short and simple ending with something like .jpg. If you want to use a pic from someplace like Google Images, click on the image, then click on View Image. That is the code you want!

Dazzle Me!