To thine own self be true

How well do you know yourself?

Even at a young age I was observant. If others around me were having conflict, or even experiencing harmony, I could feel it. In some ways it was if I could read others’ minds. Of course, that’s the stuff in which dreams are made.

Questioning the existence of God, the universe, the sky, and WHY things were the way they were was just part of daily thinking. Vividly, I remember thinking by Junior High, “I just don’t fit.” My empathy for others was so strong. At times it’s a gift. And sometimes a curse. Looking for hidden meanings, significance, and intentions could describe my interactions with people.

Getting lost in my meditative world is still something I do. My T.V. is currently off. Notifications are off. Phone is silent. The light of the day is streaming into my camper window. The shadows of the trees are dancing on the floor. The rest of the world is quiet. No disruption.

Even in my dreamy and artistic swing, I’m still a concrete gal. I have goals. I create them and I strive to meet them. Hunches are something I’ve leaned on~and intuition runs high.

Sitting at the neurologist’s office each year for the last 5 has been intriguing. Although short-term memory better than it was, it doesn’t seem to bother me that I forget the mundane. Because my mind has awakened to the part of me I remember from childhood. The part where I write, create, and imagine. Not the part where I struggled to fit in and searched in all the WRONG PLACES in the WRONG WAY to feel “normal”.

Being a good listener is important to me. Do you listen to yourself? Most importantly, do you hear the voice of the one WHO IS, WHO WAS, and WHO IS STILL TO COME? He molded you. He knew who you were before you were born. YOU ARE UNIQUE. We all have “quirks”. For me, observing others is a way to learn. It’s not judging. It’s easy for me to understand different views. However for some who wish to never change their thinking or learning, understanding other point of views equates to believing them.

As a student, teacher, and administrator, the M.B.T.I. (Meyer-Briggs Type Indicator) was used to distinguish the 16 personality traits. I double-dog dare you to take it.

Take it with an open mind. Never stop learning. Use this knowledge in your workplace, within your relationships, and how you operate in our world.

I’m an INFJ~A. In the 8 year span since I last took the test, I’ve become a bit more introverted. However, knowing these things about myself answers many questions I’ve had over the years. And still, I hold tight to my faith and the words of truth that are concreted in my heart and soul.

“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”

Romans 12:2
Have faith 💚
~I see a child, I see my own (and grandson and grandgirl to arrive soon)
~I see family, I see my life
~I see a school, I see a past career
~I see a campground, I see my current home
~I hear laughing, I hear my life
~I hear crying, I hear everyone
~I see forests, I see paths
~I hear music, I hear God
~I walk a trail, I'm walking ahead
~I climb a mountain, I'm reaching heaven
~I fall, I get up
~I sleep, I dream big
~I heal, I become stronger
~I question, I learn
~I let go, I gain
~I disagree, I respect
~I love, I love more
~I wait, I watch
~I'm quirky, I'm me 
~I am able to think, therefore I exist.

Humor Me…

How many times have you heard “If I don’t laugh I’ll cry”? Shared again just this morning, it hit me that I hadn’t had a good belly laugh in a few days. You know the ones…your side hurts, a snort might sneak out, and you laugh again later just thinking about it.

Like my faith~deeply rooted~humor has provided soft landings for hard falls. I’m native to a giggling homeland. My youngest son once said “I love how our family can laugh-even during hard times.” That hit me right between my heart chambers.

It was 1988~My wombmate (a.k.a. twin) and I were singing for the Chamber Choir of Southwest Missouri State University. Humor did not have a place at any practice. Dr. Guy Webb, choir director, was an amazing talent. He was demanding and picky~and not what I would describe as “humorous” by a long-shot. And you had better not “scoop”. To “scoop” meant you would start at a note and slide up to the note you SHOULD be singing. Simultaneously, the two of us scooped (very loudly) to a….wrong note. “Oops-a-daisy!” Things spiraled quickly. “Do not look at me!” I thought to myself. And we did it. We made eye contact with one another. NO, it wasn’t with Dr. Webb (had it been things probably would’ve remained dignified). Instead, our twin eyes caught one another and it began. IT ALWAYS begins with just a tiny giggle. And when the shoulders start to dance, it’s never a quiet outcome. Needless to say the practice had a small intermission (I’m sure other singers might agree it was needed).

Perhaps I could write a memoir titled “Times I laughed when I shouldn’t have laughed and most people would not laugh, but the weird ones like me would get it.” (WAYYYY TOOOO LOONNNGGG of a title anyway).

You see, I had to (have to) laugh. In every situation, whether sad, frustrating, horrific, unbelievable, or even catastrophic, there lies deep in my soul a pint-sized risible region. And also, residing there, is the ability to understand irony. This developed at a very young age. As a child (and now) I remember learning to understand others. And humor played a huge role.

Without diving into brain research on child development, my experiences as an educator guided me to help students develop imaginations and spot incongruities. I understood students who “got” the joke~and also those who didn’t. We all process different. Brains process humor differently. Disney and Pixar movies are loaded with humor that we, as adults, understand (and some young ones do too). It’s a joy to watch little people develop their humor.

“Having a humorous outlook on life is a good coping strategy. It helps people better manage stress and adversity. More negative humour styles, such as sarcasm, ridicule, and self-defeating humour, do not offer the same benefits. Instead, they tend to alienate people and are more associated with depressed mood and aggression….And neurobiology shows that laughter can lead to brain changes, which may explain the link between humour and intelligence.

Sadly, there are some that can’t laugh. Maybe due to a physical or biological reason. Or because they are in despair and find no reason to smile or even laugh. I’ve been there. I understand.

There’s nothing funny about the turmoil I see in our world. It doesn’t “tickle” me to witness loss of laughter in some, illness in others, hate spewing from a few or a pew, and people tearing one another down because of their own inability to love others with an open mind and no judgement. To let go of the perceived knowledge that EVERY person should think like YOU, be like YOU, dress like YOU, love like YOU, believe like YOU, walk like YOU, talk like YOU, and laugh like YOU.

There are many situations in my life that have brought tears. And when I have laughed so hard I cry,….well, those are the tears I hope we can ALL shed as much as possible. Try to make someone smile. In this complicated, and sometimes dark times, I pray you find a reason~any reason, to laugh. In contrast to my “brittle” bones, requiring much faith and attention, my funny bone seems to be more resistant to fracture. And my backbone stays strong too. Humor me…even if I’m not funny, I’ll still choose happy.

Have faith💚

Just for giggles…