A note from Sandy
I have been snowed in the past couple of days and stuck inside my house without electricity due to a crazy ice storm in Dallas. Late this afternoon, after help from my neighbor Pickens and a decision to get a hotel room for the night so I could warm up, I fearfully entered my 4-wheel drive vehicle and started the trek to Frisco to the hotel. As I am driving with my hands tightly clasped to the steering wheel and singing cheerfully to the radio to help me forget about my fear, I was reminded of what a wus I am. Sad, but I am really. At my age, big strong single girl entrepreneur business owner Sandy, is afraid to get out in the ice and stay in the cold! If I had it my way, the whole world would shut down when we had this kind of weather. Yes, I really am a wus (and I am not even sure I am spelling that right) but I am a thankful wus!
In this bad weather, my near freaking out, car stuck in the garage, worrying about family members traveling, feeling cold and like shit, trying to work, no electricity – did I mention that I was freezing?!! there were people everywhere doing their jobs, helping, serving, and being real human BEINGS! That is one thing I love about shutting down for bad weather, it kinda brings the neighborly thing out in all of us. So here I sit tonight cozy in my Aloft Hotel room. I’m warm, full of Campisi’s pizza and salad, just watched a new movie, and I am thinking WOW I am blessed! In this day with my troubles my neighbor came to my aid and helped with my garage door and car, my brother came to my emotional rescue, my dear friend hooked me up with my hotel room, and another dear friend kept checking in regularly to make sure I was getting everything worked out, and my daughter and sisters were johnny on the spot to call and text throughout the day to check on me – THEN I get to my destination tonight and a young woman braved the weather to do her job with joy and courtesy and finally, a young man braved the weather to do his job and delivered my food with a great spirit and a big smile. Now listen up guys, this is real living, this is the kind of stuff we need to notice and remember. When troubles or difficulties or just a bad day happens, love is all around – grace is around the corner. It all culminates from our life and what we are putting into it. Don’t be afraid to ask. Don’t be embarrassed to let down your defenses, DON’T be afraid to say “thank you, I love you!”, Don’t be afraid to NEED, and even when the bad stuff is going on, look at it through the eyes of a child to find the wonder and the learning from it.
Arriving relieved at the hotel (I had no incidents and did quite well driving thank you very much), I quickly grabbed my bag and laptop and crunched my way across the ice and entered the hotel lobby. Getting out on the treacherous roads reminded of a blog post I wrote BEFORE THIS CURRENT SNOWSTORM about another experience on ice, I hope you enjoy!
After being stranded in my house for several days after a bad snow storm, I had to get out to pick up a few things I had to have before the next wave of bad weather was predicted to hit – so I carefully started out in my car to head south toward my Tom Thumb grocery store….now mind you, this is the girl that has had more wreaks on ice than most people – more than I care to remember – and I am TERRIFIED of ice and my driving, we just don’t mix. This is when my DIVA comes out! I need a driver! Well wish on! So carefully I drove out of my neighborhood (and whoever told me to “man-up”, whatever! You guys are crazy, driving on icy roads is treacherous and requires skills I haven’t learned yet!) Ok, ok. So as I ventured out, driving a mere 10 mph up Spring Creek, waiting to turn at the light on Preston with a wreak being cleaned up to my left, I begin to realize a life lesson…
“We are not a country where the small gesture goes unnoticed.
We are not a country like France where charm, something light
or effervescent, can survive. We want everything you have.
We want it as fast as you can turn it out”
I see it more everyday – we (I) move too fast. We ALL move FAST, and faster if we’re really good. Our brains are whirling, minds spinning with plans, goals, thoughts…how much can we make this year? how fast can we make it? Got to loose weight today, grow my business by year end, get married, have kids, be more productive – NOW. We’re not doing enough, not good enough, not pretty enough. We think fast, multi-task, listen to fast music, talk fast, love fast, grow up fast, grow old fast, and so here we are slipping and sliding into each other, hardly knowing what hit us, or how we hit it. Dealing with decisions we made and not even remembering why we made them or what went wrong when they didn’t turn out the way we planned! We start things fast and end them even faster. I think you get my meaning here.
I have finally realized that to avoid an accident on icy roads requires that you slow down and PAY ATTENTION! Move SLOWER, watch our footing – baby steps – be light footed. No hard breaking, no slamming but gentle tap, tap, taps of the breaks, right? Watch out for the other guy, give them room to move, to stop or turn. Be less aggressive, more understanding, more forgiving, that is if you don’t want to wind up in the ditch turned the wrong way and your wheels spinning taking you NOWHERE! Geeze! Now when it comes to our lives and living to the fullest, I wish I could shout this message out to the world!
STOP! SLOW DOWN! CHILL OUT!
I’m thinking that if we would lay back and let our loved ones (and that includes ourselves) have the room needed to move forward, negotiate a turn or just come to a stop along the journey, then perhaps we would all get to where we are going unharmed and without delay! When times are tough and your road is slick and treacherous, that is the time to slow down, tap tap tap, not SLAM into decisions.
You know the saying “when in doubt, don’t“, I agree with that and will add “when you’re not sure, navigate slowly”. Now I know this defies all the marketing rhetoric we produce that says “take the leap of faith”, “money loves speed”, bla bla bla… There are times in business when I will agree you need to push forward and move fast, kinda like when you are boarding or skiing on the black slopes, you better be ready to navigate those moguls and steep terrains with skill and expert caution, but I’m not talking about that, I’m talking about our personal lives. How we live out of the core of our problems personally, spiritually, soulishly and emotionally. The rich foundation of solid thinking and loving will affect every other area of our life. Stillness and balance. We need to slow down a bit and pay attention to what our hearts are really wanting and saying.
Makes me think of one of the accidents I had on ice…..
I’m on a country road that is laced in ice and snow. I’m traveling slowly and I see the ice ahead but I’m going downhill and really have no idea how to navigate it – it’s a big hill. I am in over my head and I know it. When I approach the bottom of the hill where I need to make my turn, guess what? I cant’ stop and I crash into the ditch, nearly totaling my car! I remember the panic of that moment when I was going down that hill KNOWING I would not be able to stop. What could I have done differently? I’m not sure, maybe you can tell me, but I do know this, I had no business being on that road in the ice – it was a bad decision from the start. AND I didn’t know how to navigate my vehicle on that terrain, PLUS I was going too FAST! Moving slower, being more cautious, and taking another route would have been smarter and probably would have helped me avoid an accident.
I think it’s easy to see how these ideas and metaphors can apply to our personal experiences, but applying them to our lives is a bit more challenging, believe me I know. I will just leave you with this: You don’t want to slip and fall and crack your butt on ice, do you? Of course not, so when you see it you avoid it and move cautiously around it. When life hands you the slippery slope, the unanswered icy terrain, the undetectable black ice BS, move slowly. Think, watch, take baby steps – and don’t rush into a decision – let the ice melt!
Oh, I almost forgot my disclaimer statement: when you move slow, are more cautious, thoughtful, take baby steps, etc, you still might fall and crack your butt. Just sayin….
Love and Peace!