Posts Tagged With: hurt

Coffee Chats With Morty…

Coffee ChatToday is one of those days where my schedule is pretty full of sessions to conduct, but they are far enough between that I have the chance to think and ponder.  This is very important for an Introvert, because quiet time to process is almost akin to breathing. But it is during these productive thought parades that I have an internal coffee chat whilst I sit quietly with my coffee.  My internal “Keeper of the Brain Flame” is named Mortimer Farnsfoxington Irakafenfeld-Smythe.  Or for those who are familiar with such an inner companion, “Morty” will do.

Morty and I have been having talks since I can remember. Not the psychotic “break-out-the-strait-jacket” type of conversations, but just trying to see a situation from as many perspectives as possible. This method of perspective seeking has been quite handy during my current occupation as a Law Enforcement Chaplain. Let’s face it, people are quite the odd critter, and some are nuttier than a bald duck on ice.

Morty and I were having a bit of lively debate a while back, partly regarding where to have lunch, and partly about a situation I was dealing with due to one of my counselees feeling they were “not good enough.”  I could empathize with this person, because for most of my life, I have been told that I, too, was not “good enough.” Painful though those times were, and still are, the debate was on.

Me: “What do you think about Jill? How would you handle it?”

Morty: “The question might be about Jill, but the reason you question is closer to home.”

Me: “I have locked that away! Right now, I must help Jill.”

Morty: “By teaching her to lock feelings away? Doesn’t sound very helpful at all.”

Me: “Okay, smart guy, how would YOU deal with Jill!”

Morty: “By facing my own demons first. It’s not a good idea for a blind monkey to lead a blind person through the minefield.”

Me: “Okay, but when that door is open, you know there’s no closing it again.”

Morty: “I do. But let me ask you something before you swing that door open wide, what qualifies you to help anyone?”

Me: “Well, I have several degrees and training and understand the way people can get stuck in these mind traps…”

Morty: ” Oh REALLY? So all that book learning and training, while impressive, helps you deal with other people’s locked doors, but not your own. Interesting!”

Me: “I can’t face mine while I’m trying to help someone else.”

Morty: “You can’t help anyone until you face what you are hiding from.”

Me: “Like what? What is so pressing that I have to face it right now?”

Morty (imitating every voice who has said this to me): “You just aren’t good enough.”

Immediately, my mind recalled the baseball coach who made me play “bench warmer” for three seasons because, no matter how hard I tried and practiced, I just wasn’t good enough.  I remembered the teachers who told me math was not ever going to be something I would be “good enough” to grasp.  I remembered my own parents reminding me that I was the “Number 2 son” and all the times I never was “good enough” to equal my brother’s achievements.  I remembered all the times I had tried as hard as I could, offered all that I had, and was still labeled as “not good enough.”

The door had been opened, and I sat in my car in the far corner of the parking lot, and took punch after brutal punch again for all those times of not being “good enough.” 

Finally, Morty said: “Okay, maybe you weren’t good enough then, but now you understand what it is like to feel not good enough, and you can help.”

Me: “HOW? I feel lower than the bottom of an outhouse pit.”

Morty: “Now that you know how it feels. Why were YOU called by Jill to help?”

Me: “Because I have spoken with her several times, we have developed a rapport, we have mutual respect…”

Morty: “Nope. Here me loud and clear…Jill contacted you because she knows you are good enough to understand and good enough to offer her perspective that can help.”

Me: “Wow, you are pretty insightful to be imaginary.”

Morty: “Yeah, someone has to be, you’d be nuts without me.”

The point that I got from this entire exchange, that was heard by NO ONE, is that we are each here for a reason and a purpose. For that reason and purpose, we ARE good enough! Might take us a long time to reach that point and know why we are here, but at that point, we will be more than merely “good enough.”

Categories: Hmmmmm........, Koffee Klatch, Perspectives | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Broken or Sculpted?


How is it that a masterpiece of sculpture comes about?  Does the artist happen upon the finished works whilst having a putter about the forest?  I seriously doubt it, but when do we stop to consider what it takes to create a masterpiece?  Consider this, the artist sees a stone, envisions the completed project, and then has to remove all the stone bits until his vision is revealed.  Have a stare at any floor of the sculptor’s workshop and you will see lots of stone bits, parts, shards, rubble, and dust.  If you focus on those, you’d think the artist merely took a stone ans smashed it to bits.  But look above the piles of debris and you will behold the masterpiece.

The same example can be used with us.  When something happens to us, either we can give up and stare at the debris, OR we can understand that the masterpiece is slowly being revealed by the chipping away of the bits that hide it.  I’m sure it’s no bowl of ice cream for the stone when the chips begin to fly.  Not is it a pleasant feeling when we feel the cracks and dust as detritus of our lives lay about the floor of our world like great piles of laying about things.

We are works in progress.  Masterpieces in the making.  When we hurt, it helps to talk.

Categories: Hmmmmm........, Koffee Klatch, Perspectives, Wanderer's Wonderings | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Welcome to the Compartment Department

Today has been a challenge to my sanity (oh shut up!), and it’s days like this that reinforce a growing concern.  As you boogle through our day, we sometimes run into many situations we’d rather not have to, but must face them anyway, and because these situations are potentially stressful, we greet them at the door with a hearty “Welcome to the Compartment Department!  Please allow me to direct you to the hole where you will be staying.” 

Then once sequestered therein, we bung along with our lives until we meet more stress, (“Hi, I’m A Stressful Situation. I’d like your undivided attention or a room please.  NOW!”)  And we end up running the Headspace Bed & Breakfast for Stress, dashing from room to room….making sure each client is tucked in, quiet, with the door locked, with the neighbors not making any problems, and we zip about like a Hamster on crack in a plastic ball. 

Everything is well in hand….and we are able to fool the world by appearing calm on the outside, while inside the noggin, we’ve gone from checking on our tenants (yes, they are tenants now) with a skateboard, to zipping about door-to-door on a motorcycle, to scooting about trying to catch one tenant who figured out how to escape and is now screaming naked down the hallway, down the stairs, and through the lobby toward your voice (which you suddenly realize is the one screaming).

Don’t get me wrong, compartmentalizing is quite a good coping method for the short term.  But in the longer term, not so much.  When guests turn into tenants they tend to demand more attention and have higher expectations.  You are expected to be at their beck and call and they can keep you sleepless, weary, irritable, and even perpetually exhausted.  At a Bed & Breakfast, guests are encouraged to make themselves comfortable, enjoy the amenities, have a bit of sleep, enjoy the complimentary hors d’0euvres, and get the hell out! HOWEVER….one difference between a regular B&B and the Headspace Rooms for Rent, is that a regular B&B gets cleaned out regularly.

If you are going to compartmentalize, make sure to air out the rooms once in a while and keep guest, not tenants!

Categories: Hmmmmm........, Koffee Klatch, Perspectives | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 29 Comments

And Life Sails On

Keeping with the whole “watery” theme, I let my mind have a ponder earlier while I was busy getting more coffee, and apparently it wandered about for a moodle or two, then sauntered back quite proud of itself for having bongled a few thoughts together for the Power Point presentation I got to endure.

Dylan Thomas scribbled an absolute powerhouse of the doodle when he wrote: “Do not go gentle into that good night.”  Why should we muddle about in a glunder our whole lives, only to reach the end and slip quietly into the mists of time without so much as a blip?  We blonk along in a rut, going through the motions of our day, without even realizing because we have become so numb or fearful that we refuse to even try to step outside of our comfortable existence.  We trundle along daring not touch the sides of our rut for fear of creating a wave or leaving a trail of some sort to indicate that we even bomped along this way.  “Do NOT go gentle into that good night. Perhaps there are some who might think “what arrogance is this that should be suggested that I should step out of my comfortable area?”  To you I say, if you are comfortable in your flanneled, footied jams, and find no cause for which your heart could beat even one pace faster, then you live not…’ve been dead for a while now, and merely haven’t had the good graces to have a lie down. 

There’s another line I like, from somewhere that my mind didn’t credit in the presentation, that says: “We live until we die!” Oh REALLY?  Do we?  We may troodle down the lane of life with our heads down and keeping a measured pace, but is that living?  Living is a DARE!  Making a difference is a frightening prospect.  It requires that we step right out of line, raise our hands, or even harder….show that we care. 

My rambling point is this: We can sail through this life around the quiet of the harbor’s protection, or we can adjust our sails and discover new adventures!  Either way, the winds of life push us ever onward, the only question to inquire of yourself is….where?

I’ve said this before, and, brace yourself, here it comes again:

When you reach the moment of your end, what will you hear?

  • The deafening silence because no one knew you were ever here?
  • The applause of those who are glad you finally have gone?
  • Or the thunderous ovation of those who are glad you lived?
Categories: Koffee Klatch, Perspectives | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Unless You’re An Elephant…..

Think about all the places you’ve traveled in your lifetime thus far….all the experiences you’ve had (good and not-so-good).  Here’s a little factoid that we seldom think about, but let’s, for a moment, take a bit of a detour from our tromping about this earth and focus on what you’re carrying with you.
Did you know that every single experience, whether we consciously realize it or not, has shaped us?  As we march through our lives we take our experiences and relationships, tuck them into the great steamer trunk of our mind, and trundle on to the next station.  Think for a bit……is it time for you to go through your trunk and, perhaps, unload a few souvenirs? 

     Sometimes we merely need to rifle through and toss a few things out to make room for new goodies. 

     Sometimes we might have to do a touch more of a surgical removal of some things (and gangrenous some people). 
     Then there are the odd occasions when we must go all “Texas Chainsaw Massacre” on some because they just refuse to let go (clingy bits of issues can create a whole web of poison).

Here’s some advice that I would give to anyone and everyone:

  • “Watch were you go when you go.  In nature, snakes tend to get pissed off when they get pissed on.” 
And the OTHER piece of advice would be,
  • “Take time to take inventory.  Unload what’s weighing you down, hunching you over, or just making your head hurt.”

Life is too brief a play to carry about a great trunkful.  That is, unless you’re an elephant with a head cold.

Categories: Perspectives | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

I Am My Own Crowd

Here’s a thought to ponder: How many people does it take to become a crowd?  How many people does it take to make us feel alone?  The answer is quite obvious, for the purposes of this post, albeit perhaps not for the subjective mind. We tend to look at our lives in terms how we fit in with groups of others, yet we don’t want to, or are unable or unwilling to, consider an obvious point.  WE are a crowd.  And WE make us feel alone.

“What’s this blather you’re spewing?” Yes, I do sometimes listen to the voices within and let them have their free reign to question and debate.  Not often, or they’ll attempt a coup, but just enough to keep everything interesting.  But back to the blather……

Think about it, if you can feel alone in a crowd, why is that?  You can turn that to your advantage and let your mind have quite the adventure.  You’re standing in (insert your favorite public venue here) and people are passing by without even so much as a glance your way.  You feel the loneliness creeping up your spine.  As you feel the momentum begin to build, you can take action….start a survey: “Excuse me, Sir, should I purchase a necktie or a bowtie.”  Or you know someone has a secret in the crowd somewhere, Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to discover a secret….perhaps they are wearing two different color socks, they have possibly missed a beltloop, then there’s that tiny stain on their necktie and your job is to discover where that stain came from.  Your mind is awash with potential adventures, if you’ll take a peek inside.  And here’s another real zipper in the britches of life….you may feel lonely, but you are not the only one who does.  Surprise!  There are lots of people who feel lonely.  Perhaps you could make it your mission to find one of them and become their friend.

How many people does it take to make a crowd?  Just one!  And I’m not talking about the personalities that are jockeying for position within the crowded dustbins of my mind, although they should really try cleaning up while they milling about in there.  We are our own crowd.  There’s an old adage which states that “No man is an island” which is quite true, because no one can do everything needed to sustain an islandic existence.  However, each person has within themselves the potential to be their own crowd.  Want someone to see your point of view? Look in a mirror.  Want to face your worst critic? Look in the mirror.  Care to look into the eyes of your invisible friend? Look in the mirror.  Care to gaze into the eyes of Medusa? Look in the mirror before coffee!

We maybe feel lonely…..but we are not alone.  We are our own crowd.  Besides, the best way I can insure a lively, funny, and interesting conversation is to ask myself what I feel like eating.  The voices come alive with that debate.

Categories: Koffee Klatch | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 21 Comments

It’s SO Simple

If you would hear more then you must quiet yourself.
Categories: Hmmmmm........ | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments


Storms Are Inevitable

You hear the gentle rumble.

You see the wind begins to blow a bit harder.

Then the rains begin.

The sun hides behind the darkening clouds.

The wind sends the branches flailing and whipping about. 

The thunder booms

The lightning slashes the sky like a crooked rapier, piercing the darkness without effort.

Soon the winds are howling like ravenous wolves

Tearing at whatever they can find

Shredding all in their path.

Isn’t this how we feel when our own storms come tromping into our lives?  Have you ever asked “Why?”?   Have you ever felt more like you were a leaf in a storm….helpless and floundering at the whim of the winds?

Here’s the thing about storms, and I speak from a lifetime of experience with doing things wrong.  Storms come.  That’s inevitable and may not sound like fun, because they’re not fun, but they come anyway like it or not.  Storms don’t care if you’re ready for them or not, they’re coming anyway.  But here’s the good thing about storms…..they always pass.  Might take some time, and, true, there might be some damage, but they WILL pass.

Sometimes we feel like it’s easier just to be at the mercy of the winds and let them whip us about as they will.  But hang on and you’ll find out a lot about yourself.  By hanging on, you will be pulled and stretched and maybe even battered a bit, but you’ll come out stronger!

I don’t know how true it is, but it’s still a good story.

The story goes that Admiral Horatio Nelson, in preparing to engage Napoleon’s fleet, ordered that all of his ships of the line were to be built exclusively with the trees from the EDGE of the forests. This was because they had survived the storms and were much stronger than the trees in the middle of the forest.

It’s not easy being a Rider on the Storm.  But nothing worthwhile IS easy.


Categories: Wandering Mind | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Ever Screwed Up?

“When you make a mistake, there are only three things you should ever do about it:

admit it, learn from it, and don’t repeat it.”

~Paul “Bear” Bryant

Categories: Perspectives | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Must We Be Cynical?

“The human race has one REALLY effective weapon, and that is laughter.” ~ Mark Twain

Remember when we were kids and something funny happened (Cathy fell in the mud or Randy tore his back pocket off and we all saw his pony undies or Sarah sneezed at lunch and milk came out of her nose), we would laugh without hesitation.  Go out to the play ground and the laughter was contagious.  We laughed freely.  We laughed until we fell down…..some laughed until they needed to change britches.  We were free to laugh.

So…….when did we become so cynical that laughter was had to be learned again?  I distinctly remember my second grade teacher, a prude of a woman, with the thick polyester dress and enormous beehive hair, always looking as though someone had glued her lips together before they painted her like……well the word CLOWN comes to mind, telling our class that it was not nice to laugh when Cindy farted while writing on the blackboard. It was that particular day that I learned a valuable lesson…laughter is freeing!!!  No question about it, there’s just something about a good giggle that makes your feel better.

If laughter is so rude, then why does it flow so spontaneously?  When the elderly priest stood in front the congregation for communion, bowed his head, sneezed, and his teeth plopped into the chalice….trying to stifle laughter was quite physically painful.  Not nearly as painful as the whipping I would have received later, but still I think I pulled some sort of muscle.

Are you permitted to laugh in staff meeting when the CEO gestures to make a point and their pen flies across the room?  Is it permissible to laugh when someone gets on the elevator not thinking anyone would be already in the car and they walk in scratching their…..?

I like a good laugh.  I’ll even take a bad laugh over cynical disapprovitude any day!  If laughter was illegal, comedians would be weapons!  It’s fun to laugh.  If you can’t find anything funny, stand naked in front of a mirror……now do jumping jacks…….and now turn around……..oh, you thought that was a mirror?  That’s my webcam lens. And thank you very much…you’ll be on YouTube shortly.

Don't be afraid to laugh at yourself
or you may miss out on the best
joke ever!

Categories: Perspectives | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

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