I DID IT-with a little help from my friends!

People find this hard to believe, but I am afraid of a lot of things.  OK I looked up the definition just to make sure I am using the right word. Afraid: 1.filled with fear or apprehension 2. filled with regret or concern 3. feeling worry or concern or insecurity 4. having feelings of aversion or unwillingness.The only one that does NOT fit is number four. 

I remember reading a book Love is Letting Go of Fear by Gerald Jampolsky.

“There are only two emotions: one is Love and the other is fear. Love is our true reality. Fear is something our mind has made up, and is therefore unreal.”

Gerald G. Jampolsky, Love Is Letting Go of Fear

At first I found that ridiculous but as I thought about different things I did-I realized everything I did-I could tie to either love or fear.  I started to think about over people’s behavior as well-the boss that hovers, the perfectionists, and the procrastinators. It helped me to see people differently.  We have all run into people at work that seem grumpy and indifferent. Instead of being upset-I saw them differently.  Certainly that type of behavior was not love-so they must be afraid of something.  It really is a paradigm shift and I think it is easier to stop taking things personally and be compassionate because no one likes to be afraid.

“Fear and love can never be experienced at the same time. It is always our choice as to which of these emotions we want…”

Gerald G. Jampolsky

Oh yeah-that is so true and I have gotten in trouble many times, with people I love, for choosing fear. Once it was too gone to get back-I realized my actions were fear based.  I will make every effort from now on not to make decisions based on fear-when it comes to my relationships with people.

I am always afraid of trying something new. Like I have a new silhouette machine.  Yes-I have been busy but I admit I may be procrastinating trying it the first time because it is new. I procrastinate on projects thinking I can’t do it, or I need hours of time-only to find out when I finally jump in…that I can do it just fine.


Sometimes if it is something I really want to do, I will do it anyway. It could be taking a class in a new technique, going to a party where I do not know anyone, joining a new group, or greeting someone at church (yes, this is scary for me). I won’t sleep and I ‘ll be anxious, but I do it.

But there are some things I would never do alone.  I am pretty brave considering all the things I have made myself do over the years and all the hairy things I have survived but I doubt I will I know I will never be as brave as my friend Annette who traveled to Italy by herself! I know I will never jump out of a parachute like my friend Sharon.

Ok I did crochet the bracelet I thought I could not do. But when I did not understand the directions for the closure, it sat for months.  Finally I decided I would finish it MY way so that I could wear this bracelet I loved.

Something that has been on my list for a while is a 5K. Now I am not a runner, I am a walker.  I want to do the Disney one because I want that medal. But, this is one of those things I am NOT doing unless I have a buddy. Too far out of my comfort zone. I have asked friends here and there but never followed through-well…because I am afraid.

Then one day I am sitting with friend Jo Foringer and she said she has signed up for a 10K and that she will be walking. I was listening-I asked for details. I used to walk over three miles a day so I figured I could do this-I can walk.  Knowing I would be with her-a confidence buddy or whatever you want to say…I signed up.  I told myself I needed to get out walking again and wearing sneakers (hate them) to get ready.  I had months.  Well, life is busy and I probably only walked a few times,  I was not giving up though-because as rigid as I can be when I am afraid, I am just as rigid if I have told someone I am going to be there.

So Jo and her husband Dave would meet me at the race. I got there first and then was freaking that she was not coming. Of course they did. I had only slept three hours the night before because-I was afraid. I knew I could finish in three hours because I know my walking pace.  But what if I have to go to the bathroom  What if I get a cramp? What if I get overheated? OK so I planned ahead.  I have a fanny pack and I packed it for every disaster.

Two waters

Two kind bars

tissues (lack of such could be embarrassing)

Deep Blue roll on (for cramping-my friend had used it in a previous race)

Digestzen (a tummy issue would NOT be good-I used this three times!)

Peppermint Beadlets (to keep me alert, help me if I get stuffed up)

Motivate Essential Oil-enough said

Cell phone-got to document this moment

Our friend Tara was there and that was a great feeling to see her before we began and get a hug.  Jo also had some other friends there as well.

When we started out, Dave & Jo were pacing a little faster than I expected. Dave has long legs and Jo was moving.  They asked if they were going too fast and I said no because really-it did not feel bad to me.  As I timed how we were doing, I felt the pace was a good one.

The walk started off with pelting rain and wind.  I was soaked and hated water getting in my face.  We had a headwind for sure but I would rather have it the first half and not the second. Overall I kept just a bit behind Dave & Jo.  The turning point was exciting.  I had no cramping, was not exhausted, and as water was provided, had plenty of water on me still.  I was not overheated at all.

I was thrilled when we got to the end-I think in just over two hours.  Would have been perfect if I had not fell in the sand.  Just to my knees-not out of exhaustion or anything but walking up the hill in the soft sand was the hardest part! There was one woman that was carried across the line by her friends! I got my Octopus Medal and I was SO PROUD of myself. I was SO THANKFUL for the experience. I wondered, of course, what took me so long to do this. But we know the answer, fear.

There were many encouraging words along the way!


After getting up that hill-we grabbed some water and then went off to party a bit before I headed home. Yes I did drink that before 10am!

Dave & Jo-I cannot thank you enough.  Thanks Dave for being the leader, even if you had to walk backwards sometimes. Thanks for your great pacing-all the encouragement helped me to do something that has been on my list for years.  Actually-a 5K was on my list so this was even better.  Just a little help from friends makes a difference.

Dave & Jo have already signed up for a 5K. As soon as I see that the date is not a conflict with our convention, I plan to join them.

Here’s hoping anyone that reads this will take a step towards doing something they really want to do that they are a bit afraid of. And if I can help you I will!

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Have friend-will travel!

My friend Cecil came to visit me from Texas.  We have been friends since before my daughter was born (she is 34). As long as we have known each other, we have liked traveling.  Sometimes we do the local things in a given area and other times we venture out a bit.

I kept asking Cecil when he could come and he finally pinned down some dates in April.  So then I compiled some ideas about what we could do. My husband suggested that we alternate longer trips and shorter trips-ending with local activities on Cecil’s last day.  This was a great idea.  With Cecil arriving Monday afternoon-we had four full days for fun-Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.  Saturday we would bring Cecil to the airport early-so that we could participate in an Earth Day Vendor Event in Orlando.

Monday we went to dinner at Rib City-this place is one mile from our home in Grant. The owner of this place has really made this a favorite local spot.  Great food, great service, and great atmosphere.  It is so wonderful to have this place so close to home! Not only is the food great, but The Old Grant Creamery is on the premises with the best ice cream ever!  While Cecil was here I think we went a total of three times-Cecil loved it!

This is what we decided on for our week of fun.

Day 1 Tuesday: Tarpon Springs

Day 2 Wednesday: Sanford, Cassadaga,  and dinner at Megan’s

Day 3 Thursday:  St. Augustine

Day 4 Friday: Indian Buffet Lunch, Downtown, and Beach Walk

Day 1: We headed to the sponge docks at Tarpon Springs. The weather was comfortable until the afternoon and by then we were ready to leave. We ate at Yianni’s.  I told Cecil he MUST have the flaming cheese ( Saganaki). Cecil did like the flaming cheese but I learned that Cecil does not like Gyros.  For him the meat and the spices were strange. I loved mine and he offered me the rest of his-but I was full. We walked the streets and we picked up a couple things.  I loved lunch-but the Gyro was not Cecil’s favorite. It was a great ride though-both ways.  Cecil and I like to take back roads-you never know what you will see. We went to Abbott’s Custard in Vero-kinda on the way home.  Abbott’s is something I have been connected to since childhood when my grandparents took us every summer.  Cecil loved it of course.

Decorated bicycles in Tarpon Springs, FL

Day 2: I told Cecil about Sanford after friends and I had gone their to see a friend’s art exhibit.  I fell in love with this town.  There is a great variety of stores and eateries. There is so much charm in this city.  I love the Jeanine Taylor Folk Art Gallery.   I think Cecil was surprised by some of the crazy (that’s a good thing) art in there.  He really liked the watercolors. A new group was setting up and we met an artist that was retired after 47 years of teaching.  As Cecil and I are both retired teachers-that was fun.  We walked the streets, which are beautiful, and at my suggestion ate at Hollerbach’s Willow Tree Cafe.     My stepdaughter had recommended this to me and I had gone there with my girlfriends on the first trip.  This is excellent food.  I do not remember what Cecil had but he did like it.  I had the sausage plate again (like last time) but this time had sauerkraut and mashed potatoes with it.  The mashed potatoes were the best I have ever put in my mouth.  The kraut was fantastic and if you eat German food-you know mashed potatoes and kraut together are amazing.  I had the bratwurst-also fantastic.

After Sanford we decided to bop over to Cassadaga.    Cecil had been years before and enjoyed the town, bookstore, and a reading. He had the reading and left feeling great about everything the person shared.  He tried to get the same person again but she was busy.  He was able to meet with someone that day and was very happy with that person as well.  It was very interesting to listen to things Cecil had to say about the experience and that was one event this time that when he told me about it, I got goosebumps…

 

Last stop for day 2 is to Megan’s for dinner. She made a fantastic eggplant dish-I bought the salad fixins’.

Day 3: St. Augustine-the nation’s oldest city. I love St Augustine so I suggested it. It’s a bit of a ride but Cecil and I enjoy long rides and he would often look at the map and find alternate routes to using the highway.  We arrived in time for lunch and ate at a place I hadn’t eaten at before.  The menu offered Po Boys which appealed to both of us.  While the inside was typical casual decor-the food was great! The Florida Cracker Cafe–  I admit I loved the name.  It reminds me that I told Cecil he must read A Land Remembered by Patrick Smith.  When I mentioned this to Cecil in the Sanford bookstore, a woman chimed in and also shared her love for the book. We walked around after lunch and I was excited to find some jewelry pieces by Kelli Rae Roberts on sale. When the afternoon got warm-we headed home.  I think we stopped at The Old Grant Creamery again-Cecil said it is the best ice cream he has ever had.

Day 4: Kept things local this day because Cecil would leave early the next morning.  Didn’t want to tire him out! In the morning I stayed home and got a little work done-then we headed out for a few short errands before lunch.  My grandogs Lotus & Po are having a one year Whobilation (birthday) on Sunday so first stop was the pet store to get gifts.  My daughter always collects donations for the shelter at their BD but come on-I am the grammy so I was buying a present.  Megan told me Lotus needed something challenging-that girl is smart.  So I picked a puzzle with four things to do.  For Po-I chose a ball machine.  You put the ball in and it shoots out.  I also knew Diesel (chihuahua) would love it. Off to Taste of India for buffet lunch

We both enjoyed it-I have never been disappointed here.  After lunch we went downtown.  I found a new store there Giftique, with lots of things my friend Annette would like.  I have my eye on a gold crown I saw there. Lots of art by Kellie Rae RobertsCecil bought some bath salts at Indian River Soap .

After perusing downtown-we headed over the bridge to the beach.  Every time Cecil visits we go to the beach.  As we walked this time, we remembered when we first took Megan on a beach walk.  She was about three and would walk at the water’s edge, fall down, run a few more feet, fall down-she loved it.  It was a perfect day for a walk-in fact we were very fortunate to have beautiful weather every day Cecil was here.

Friday night-Cecil’s last night-he offered to take us for dinner to our other favorite local eatery-The Old Fish House Bar & Grill.  We sat outside and it was wonderful.  We suggested the Redfish to Cecil as it is a favorite.  I , however, have been craving clam strips so that is what I ordered-with hushpuppies of course because they are amazing.  We had a nice dinner-but then it was back home to work.  Marty and I had samples to prepare and had to pack the car completely for the Earth Day Event at Lake Eola the next day.  Cecil offered to help but we declined-thinking it would not take long! Sorry to say that we worked till almost ten! Cecil decided to turn in-good idea as we would be out early in the morning.

I always enjoy when Cecil comes.  I am looking forward now to getting back to Texas, on his territory.  Have a quite a few friends I can visit in Texas-it’s a big state.

I kept the list of ideas Cecil and I compiled for travel-for when he comes again.

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