This blog is about sharing my experiences openly and honestly. It has the tagline no more hiding in the shadows. Many others have had the same thoughts and feelings that fuel my writing. Repressing emotion produces nothing positive, and expression should not be feared. Okay, pep talk over.
- Copyright: everett225
Summoning the courage to share this has been surprisingly difficult. Until I determined what fueled the emotions behind the poem and why there was such difficulty in sharing it, clicking the publish button could not happen. This has taken months to achieve.
“Soul Miners” was written at time when each and every facet of my life felt like it needed something. Helping others and being a problem solver gives me great joy, yet I was not experiencing feelings of joy, I was feeling overwhelmed.
Writing the poem felt good, but understanding why I felt so overwhelmed was necessary. It took a few weeks, but eventually a simple reason why emerged – imbalance. Deep inside was a contemplation that if I am working to care for so many others, who is taking care of me? That is not a self-centered thing to experience. In fact, it made me stop and realize how many people I am blessed to have who care for me every day. My wife, my friends and family all came to mind. These are the people I take great joy in caring for because they take care of me. Balance was restored, but a question still lingered.
Why was the experience so hard to openly share? Another simple reason – fear. Openly expressing the fact that requests for my help can sometimes be overwhelming created a fear that the requests would stop. I feared losing the joy I receive when others rely on me.
Will honesty about my feelings drive others away? I truly hope that will not prove to be true, and suspect the answer exists in a phrase a friend often uses. “I am not complaining, I am just explaining.” Uttering one of the smallest words in our language – no – is a struggle for me and many others. But saying it contains something I strive to deliver with this blog. Honesty.
Finally, a caveat about the language in this poem. This is the first time for me to share something containing profanity. If such language is not for you, maybe check this out and then consider coming back to read “Soul Miners”. After all, they are just words.
Dealing with change is a major challenge for me. Continuing to move forward when routines and schedules are in flux may be my biggest weakness. While processing a period of change, imagery of a flowing river carrying particles toward its terminus came to mind. All the gathered bits of earth travel along, like sand flowing in an hourglass, and are eventually deposited to create something new at the delta.
Mississippi River Delta. Credit: Nasa Images
A eureka moment happened when it occurred to me that delta is also the symbol used to represent change in an equation. The recognition of multiple meanings for words like ‘delta’ and ‘current’ was intriguing. Sand represented both the passage of time and parts of my routines that were changing. New land is created at the terminus of a river, just like the grains of my life were shifting to eventually create new routines.
Writing this poem helped me get through that time of change. I realized change occurs with breakdown of status quo but also creates something new and fertile.
Let’s take a ride on the river together.
I suffer from Sudden Hypersensitive Anxiety With Noise (SHAWN) Syndrome. Wait….what? That’s not a real medical condition? Well, I will have to look into that later.
Extraneous sounds while I am focused and trying to accomplish a task are like nails on a chalkboard. Clicking sounds, electronic beeps or buzzes and noisy chatter infiltrate my central nervous system which can easily short circuit. The reaction may be one of frustration, anger or even on the verge of a panic attack. Yes, it is ridiculous that I am unable to just deal with the noise and tune it out, yet that is not how my brain works. Sensory overload is one of my weaknesses.
Ask my wife what happens when I am driving and something starts rattling in the car. A creaking dashboard equals time to start shopping for a new vehicle. I once stuck the little red tube attached to a can of WD-40 into the dash of my Ford Escape, saturating the inside with the wonder fluid to stop a squeaking noise. If you are wondering about the level of success – there is a reason that is not among the thousands of uses listed on the can. WD-40 does NOT make a good air freshener either.
This poem came about during a flare up of SHAWN Syndrome. There are similar poems to share in future posts, but……….aaaaAAAAA, what is that ringing noise? Sorry, gotta go.
Exercise and fitness are a huge part of my life. The health benefits are great, but the resulting quality time with my wife and friends is even more valuable.
I became serious about improving my physical health in 2014 and am now in the best shape of my life. Working with a personal trainer has been a key to my success. It was an incredible stroke of luck to find someone who has helped me grow in strength and ability beyond anything ever imagined possible. Also, much more than strength and ability grew. The guy who started off as my trainer has become one of my best friends. Nothing could have been better – health and muscle gains all while hanging out with my buddy.
My workout routine became an obsession. Just working out with a trainer was not enough. At one point I was in the gym seven days a week, and if a workout was missed, it made me cranky. Continuing at that level of demand on my body was not sustainable. Still, I pushed forward until the inevitable happened. A few minor injuries and setbacks occurred, and my body needed rest.
I began to fear all of my gains would be lost. Backing off on the intensity of the routine would certainly mean a loss of what I had worked so hard to achieve. Those feelings were channeled into this poem, and that seemed to be the end of the story. But something deeper existed in the meaning. It was not just the loss of muscle and physical strength I feared.
A priceless friendship had grown from what started as a trainer-client relationship, and although it sounds ridiculous to state it now, a threat to sustaining the insane gym routine translated into a threat to the friendship. My narrow mind was equating one with the other. I was selling my friend and the friendship short.
In no way was this conclusion reached on my own. That was achieved by talking about what was in my head with my
trainer friend – a continuing key to my personal success both in and out of the gym.
I have changed my workout routine, finding new ways to stay active, being smarter about time in the gym and resting. Nothing has been lost and the truly important thing has continued to grow – the prized friendship is worth more than ever before.