Joy Abounds

falkorThe best part of having survived a shitty childhood is that it makes for a grateful adult. Of course the downside is that you also have a tendency to be anxious ’cause you know what kinds of serious shit can hit the fan. The stuff of movies. The stuff you don’t even see in movies.

So when I heard Brene Brown talk about fear at the World Domination Summit last summer, I got it. Yes, I’m the spouse who said to her partner, what if…? Buzz kill.

Switching gears…I’ve always loved flying. Actually I am almost always overwhelmed with tears as the plane accelerates down the runway and the nose lifts. The possibilities are endless. I could be anyone going anywhere. And for a brief moment I am.

But sometimes before I can relax into this bliss, I am overtaken with anxiety. The “what if” scenarios are endless.

But not today. Today joy abounds. And I slice through the clouds on the back of Falcor, the dragon in The Neverending Story. And the joy of it makes me smile. And I cry. Because the possibilities are endless and I am flying.

If you really knew me, you’d know that…

behind the curtain

  • I make good things better.
  • I’m not the best writer I know, but I’m a great editor.
  • I love being the girl behind the scenes. Some people covet the spotlight. That’s not me. I prefer to be the wind beneath that person’s wings.
  • I deconstruct everything, even sitcoms. One of the side effects of being an English major.
  • My super power is that I see the rock star in everyone and mirror it so they can see it too.
  • I’m an introvert, but I play an extrovert most of the time which means I’m an Oscar-worthy actress.
  • Whether Klout recognizes it or not, I have a lot of influence. When I talk, people pay attention and take action.
  • I’m a third culture kid. When I was nine our family spent a year living abroad in France and Austria.
  • I intuitively know people.
  • I hate jelly beans, amusement parks, scary movies and Vegas.
  • My strengths, as identified by Strengthfinders, are Maximizer, Discipline, Developer, Relator and Individualization.
  • I’m magnetic; people are drawn to me.
  • I can talk to anybody.
  • I’m the ultimate connector. My friends say I’m what you want LinkedIn to be.

P.S. I obviously need someone to edit my writing. Thanks, Pup.

What I learned about indirect communication at the Main Cafe

Ours was the third booth from the back on the left. A young widow with two preschoolers, my young widowed mother had no propensity for preparing balanced dinners for us at home. The chicken fried steak and meatloaf meals that Harold prepared were so generous–and at $1.29, so well priced–that my thrifty mother ordered a single meal which we shared. My earliest memories of dinner were served by Harold’s brother Jim or Jim’s wife Ruth at the Main Cafe.

Looking back, so much of my early education in indirect communication was acquired in this small southeastern Iowa cafe on 7th and Main.

A look or a nod to Jim would yield a refilled coffee cup or a scoop of butter brickle ice cream served in a sundae glass.

While the ancient menu might contain tempting items like grilled cheese sandwiches, Harold expected everyone to order from the specials, and he had a less than subtle way of bringing noncompliant customers around to his way of thinking.

Jim sitting at the bar behind his old Royal, typing up tomorrow’s menu, meant that he was not to be disturbed.

A customer standing at the bar near the front would invariably prompt Ruth or Jim to materialize, accept payment and add the bill to the stack on the metal spike next to the register.

metal spikeEach evening, after a leisurely dinner, the crosswords and dessert, my mother would carefully stack all of the dishes and position them to the side of the table nearest the server. Jim would respond with a measured smile and a nod, his expression of thanks


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