Sometimes the message is all about the perception of the receiver.


Well, it’s been awhile since I blogged, and the least I can say about it is that life kind of got derailed for a bit.

As you may remember, I had experienced a kitchen accident leaving me with a good sized chunk missing from my dominant index finger. That’s all healed up now, but typing was a real bummer for a few months. Sometimes you just have to stop, rest, and take stock of what’s important.  As such, I just needed to take a blog break for a bit.

As part of a break from blogging, which I’ve missed, I’ve been thinking about the types of things I write, and the sorts of things I post on other social media. 

What prompted me to do a deep think about these things is that I’ve been forced to check myself, to make sure I wasn’t posting things that may be generally offensive to others. You see, a friend said something to me that was kind of mean, said in spiteful, sarcastic kind of tone, about some things I post. These things were general posts about stuff that I do, or places I go, and I couldn’t figure out what was it that I did that was so offensive.

I began to stew on this quite a lot, to the point where I felt compelled to ask my mother, and several trusted friends, what it could be. Being familiar with my postings they had no answer for me, and were equally as puzzled. 

In thinking this through, I remember something from a college communications course I took. The instructor looked us all in the eye one day and stated emphatically that how information is received is a product of the receiver, of their life experiences, and many times you can’t do anything about that. Our perception will color everything we see and hear, and sometimes the intent of the speaker/poster is lost getting through all of that.  I see how that is true in my life sometimes, especially with political and social issues. 

Sometimes there is no intent other than sharing your joy in doing something that makes you happy, but it can get caught up and discolored in the filter of others’ unhappiness.  It’s painful to hear. 

I’ve come to the conclusion that I can’t fix that because it won’t make these people happier to see me unhappy… at least I hope not. I’ve made an effort to try not to post when I’m sad or super angry about something. It gives the effect that my life looks super rosy on Facebook, and that is an unintended result. I have a regular life with ups and downs, just like everyone else.

Blogging is quite different for me than regular social media. This is the space I use to help myself work through some things I struggle with sometimes. I like to keep it as positive as I can but once in awhile you will see things here that aren’t as happy, like today. Thanks for your patience while I work through this.  It was hard to write about, and I spent more time than normal editing this post.

Having said that, I always do my best to end my blog posts on a positive beat. I want you to know that it really is ok to be happy. It’s ok to share what you find joy in doing. Rock on, happy campers, and many blessings to you all!

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Hope in days of despair, which means we win


So much despair today.

As I was busy last night, catching up with some old friends, I was a little slow to find out about the terrorist attacks in Paris, and was shocked when I woke up to the news this morning. What happened to those poor people is unconscionable, and unforgivable. Apparently there were attacks in other places this week as well, but they didn’t seem to get any press. There’s nothing to prove by systematically shooting innocent people. Nothing. While most of the people who perpetrated these crimes are dead, they certainly have accomplices, and I hope they are caught before they can strike again.

I spoke with Younger Son today. I made sure to speak with him on the phone before Monday, because he ships out and will be at sea for 5-7 months. As a consequence, I will not hear his voice for that long, and will have very little communication with him during that time. If I’m lucky, he will get a chance to send a quick email when they get close enough to shore. I feel quite a lot of despair about him being on an air craft carrier out in the middle of the ocean. I shouldn’t because our carriers are surrounded by a whole group of support ships, which have heavy-duty fire power. Still, I worry. Especially in light of the escalating events going on around the world.

Add on top of all of this that my work life feels like an ongoing train wreck, my house is a shambles (with the exception of my lovely new cupboards), and I just have very little interest in things that used to give me a lot of joy.

At times like these, sometimes it’s all I can do to hold it together and not just sob hysterically. I just about did today, at a wedding.

I hate weddings. What? Who hates weddings?! I hate going to weddings because I get really emotional and cry. Never fails, and it doesn’t even matter if I know the bride and groom well or not. As is the norm, I found myself sniffling with tears running uncontrollably down my cheeks…and I wasn’t smart enough to bring a kleenex with me. Uff-da…

I thought hard about why I was crying. It was a very lovely service, with lots of impromptu humor, and it was fairly quick. I analyzed myself and wondered if I cry at weddings because my own marriage failed. No…I don’t think so. I’ve been crying at weddings since before I got married myself. Probably, I am just an old sap, and there’s no help for that.

Something I did notice is people having babies (and there are a LOT of them I know having babies right now), and people getting married, give me hope for the future. Despite the fact that evil people are making a concerted effort to inflict terror on innocents around the world, we are still going about the business of living, and being happy. We forge ahead assuming life will be good, and that we will just carry on. Regardless of what comes, that’s generally what people do.

Four years ago, I wrote a blog post entitled “Join me in pissing off the terrorists“. I read it through again, and I believe what I said then still stands. We just need to keep on keeping on, because that’s what makes us happy, and what infuriates them so much. They are evil because they work so hard to make us feel something other than happy or hopeful. If they spent as much time working on themselves rather than killing others, perhaps life everywhere would be much better.

I’m glad I didn’t get the news about the attacks until this morning. I spent quality time with old friends, eating some awesome grilled pizza and catching up. That is something those nasty terrorist bastards can’t ever take away from me. Life is too short to hunker down and not live. Let freedom ring…ring it loud.

Here’s hoping that, no matter what, you are getting out and living life to the fullest you can…whatever that means for you. Every single time we do something that makes us happy, even the tiniest bit, we win. Blessing All!