Friday, January 13, 2012
Sorry, Laughter, Strength Stole Your Invitation!!
The past few weeks I've been having some revelations that I'm not quite sure what to do with. What I do know about them is they are screaming that if I start denying my strength again, I'm going to regret it!
See I've been tempted to deny my strength again for many of the same reasons I pushed into into a dark corner years ago. I can keep the peace. I can maintain the status quo. Certain people like me better when I'm not so strong. Certain people really don't like it when I live in my strength. Sometimes being strong costs you...
Yesterday revelations were hitting me like I was their own personal speedbag. I couldn't keep up. I tried to roll with the punches, but I soon became overwhelmed. I still don't know exactly what all that means, but I do know I need to listen to my life.
With all those punches coming one right after the other, I didn't know what I was going to do to get myself in the right frame of mind for my evening plans. A distraction presented itself and I latched on to it. It worked. My frame of mind changed. I smiled. I laughed. I joked. I played. By the time I pulled out of my garage, I knew I would be okay for the evening.
I drove to Salem for the Willamette Writers Salem Chapter meeting with my mind focused on music, possibilities, and just being my best self. Before the meeting, I met with author and friend, Jennifer Fields for a little chat. Then we went to the meeting together. Christina Katz was the presenter for the evening. While Christina's message wasn't exactly new to me, it was exactly what I needed to hear. Some times reminders can be as important as new information. In a scary way her presentation lined up with several of the revelations that had been punching me all day. A couple of the things she talked about perfectionism getting the way of progress and the importance of surrounding one's self with positive people and letting negative people go. Her presentation didn't lead me to any direct answers, but I did walk away from it with the realization that my revelations may not be paranoia or irrational or unfounded after all. I'm not sure that's the message I wanted, but perhaps it's what I needed to hear.
I drove home with my thoughts racing but concluding that no matter what has happened in my life, I have survived. That is strength. I haven't always thrived, but I have always survived long enough to find my way back to thriving. Even at times when I've felt weak and trapped, my strength has bubbled under the surface fighting to break free. And perhaps that's what's at the core at all of those revelations using me as a speedbag yesterday.
So when my life screams at me that I can't force laughter, I have to let it find me, and it won't until I'm willing to embrace that I'm strong enough to let it live with me, I have to listen. If I don't, life will keep punching me until I do. So, Laughter, I'm not rescinding my invitation, I'm just saying I won't be begging, pleading, cajoling, or bribing you... You are always welcome, so come at your leisure.
In the meantime, Strength, it looks like you and I are best friends forever! Welcome! Let's play, let's grow, let's learn, let's reflect, let's laugh, let's love, let's LIVE!!!!
T. L. Cooper grew up on a farm in Tollesboro, Kentucky. She earned a Bachelor of Science from Eastern Kentucky University. Her poems, short stories, articles, and essays have appeared online, in books, and in magazines. Her published work includes a novel, All She Ever Wanted, five books of poetry, and a book of short stories. When not writing, she enjoys yoga, golf, creating plant-based recipes, and traveling. Currently, she resides in Albany, Oregon.