The last week in December through me a few curve balls.
Not that I hadn’t had curve balls thrown before. I have. And I’ve survived. Always with a little help from my friends.
In one week, in the space actually of two days, three interesting balls lobbed my way.
First, after weeks of my car sometimes starting, sometimes not, I had dropped it at my favorite mechanic, Car Docs, knowing something was up. Hoping against hope each time I got in my car those last few weeks that my car would start!
That little car started in order for me to get it to Car Docs. It was one of the last times it would start. It was unfortunate; however, my 2009 Ford Escape Hybrid would start only one more time. Speaking with Ed at Car Docs, I had to have it towed to a Ford dealer so that the computer systems could be checked out. My insurance kicked in and the Escape was towed, with no promise of them looking at it until next week. My intuition told me this was probably it for the little car that I had loved and my kids learned to drive on.
This all happened when I was out of town! I was in Iowa organizing and talking almost the entire drive home. I frantically called car rentals and friends to figure out what I would do without a car for almost a week.
At some point I realized quite calmly, that it was very possible I might have to buy a new car.
The next curve ball thrown was a forgotten suitcase in Iowa. I had packed it, zipped it and left it where I was staying. I didn’t figure this out until we reached my house. There was nothing really in the suitcase except clothes, (including laundry that needed to be washed) and to my chagrin, my make-up and jewelry. I NEVER pack my make-up. I NEVER pack jewelry. I always carry it with me or have it on me. And yet this time, I packed it.
That evening, exhausted and worn out, worried about what I might have to do, I received a bullying email from you guessed it-the narcissist I divorced over 18 months ago. The email was the in the same tone that I had experienced in the later years of my marriage.-Threats, bullying and ridiculous claims.
HERE is where my story CHANGES. The original version of this included much more information that if you’ve read my previous blogs or know me, you understand. I do NOT have to once again go into any detail. I just don’t. You get it. We all get it. It’s no longer necessary to talk about this. Not for me.
My story is MY story. And I chose this life for a reason. I chose to be happy. To live a life filled with happiness, good work, purpose and vision. I GET TO DECIDE how to live my life; filling it with light surrounded by family, friends, fun and adventure. THIS is my decision. There was a reason this particular event happened when it did.
Because as I began to look forward to 2020 I was also preparing lessons for memoir classes. The question that continued to come up: What story do I want to tell? What is MY intention? How do I want to spend my time, energy and heart?
While encouraging us to “resolve to evolve”, Jennifer Cooper, yogi, reiterated this, “Faith is believing that one of two things will happen. There will be something solid for you to stand on or that you will be taught to fly.” She asked us to think about what was weighing us down, what fears no longer serve us (did they ever?!) and what places or people we needed to cut the ties. I realized that taking care of problems immediately and NOT engaging does quite a bit for my mental health.
Yes, this might have been a curve ball, but I am ready. First to fly, second to shake off that which is weighing me down and to shoo away the fears. Thereby cutting ties to a story that NO LONGER REFLECTS WHO I AM.
Yes, this is part of my history; however, I am choosing to live in the NOW.
After a fun, lovely trip with my friend Jeff who simply witnessed most of this in his gentle kind way, he offered suggestions as I dealt with the car, assured me he would retrieve my suitcase and then made me dinner. Suggesting we go out for drinks, instead I asked, “Can we just go on a walk?” I asked. “I need the fresh air.”
I looked at this kind soul who was simply supporting me, making me laugh and making sure I was fed.
Heading out into the cold winter night I stopped and looked at him and burst into tears.
Much to his credit, he simply held me, let me cry (and it was NOT a Hallmark movie cry-it was big sobs, weeping, and snotty, entire body shaking crying). He let me cry it out. He continued to hug me and when I was ready we walked it off.
I talked and cried some more, “You cry when you’re frustrated, don’t you?” he asked.
Yes, and it takes a lot to frustrate me.
One by one, I worked the problem.
Enlisting another friend for help, I ended up at Lou Fusz where they offered to buy the car. Then we test drove a Buick Encore (hello, a Buick?!) and zoomed out of the parking lot. I looked at Jeff. “This is amazing”. Though I hadn’t planned on it, I ended up selling my car to the amazing people at Lou Fusz (thanks Mike, Scott, Nathan, and the entire crew) and buying an Encore.
My friend Sandye texted me, “Time to move forward. I think it’s interesting your car during your marriage was an “escape” and today you bought an Encore”. Coincidence?
The suitcase would solve itself in time. I could buy more make up (mascara is necessary) and the jewelry would find its way back to me.
Curveballs? Okay. In this ball game, I’m having an encore. I’m choosing my story and those that I want in it. I am choosing how to spend my time, my energy and my heart and wow does that FEEL GOOD.
That curveball might fly…AND I CAN TOO. I’m gonna make it after all.
Contact Pam Wilson and read more of her work here.