I had reached a sort of inner stalemate again last weekend with my writing. It wasn’t for a lack of topics or stories that I have stored up in my noggin’ over a lifetime. But, I stopped abruptly and asked myself, “Where am I headed with this journey?”
Was my writing continuing to improve? I think so. Was I headed in a successful direction? Far too early to answer that. And would I be able to tie all of my Phoenix stories into the lifelong dream of writing a book about our life together? That one weighed heavily on me and there was a feeling of doubt cast upon me. By yours truly.
I know, I know. Stop asking the questions and just write and what is meant to be will be revealed when it’s meant for me to see it. Don’t stop believin’, right?
Then someone made the most simplest gesture that absolutely spun my head around. And this post is to say thank you!
By now, you’ve probably clicked on the video and can hear this sensational song. If you like it please continue to listen to it as you read because I wrote this post while doing the same. I have this deep connection to write my stories to music. I can’t explain it but it’s been that way my entire life. And by the way, I will always be a Steve Perry traditionalist.
I first heard this song some 30 years ago when it was released. And the memory I remember most back then about it was living in California’s Central Valley and driving one late warm Spring afternoon as the day turned gently into evening. With the beautiful twilight creeping into my rear view mirror on this journey. I was zipping along a country road with vineyard row after vineyard row flying by on each side of me.
I was a nervous wreck because I had my very first official, steady girlfriend and I was headed to her farm to meet her parents for the first time. With my high-end Pioneer car stereo at the ready I pushed Journey’s “Escape” cassette tape into the player. A song that would stand strong as a mega hit 30 years later filled my soul as “Don’t Stop Believin'” surrounded the entire inside of my prized 1968 Firebird. I was filled with confidence and knew I would be in good favor with her parents. It wasn’t anything to do with a love sonnet but much more so about the calming feeling to always believe in myself.
So last weekend I was sitting in the computer chair staring at the screen. I didn’t even have a grasp on the computer mouse. I was fidgeting and couldn’t concentrate or focus. My thoughts kept bouncing around to the questions swirling around in my head. Those old demons of lack of self-confidence to low self-esteem knocking lightly on the door.
Phoenix had been lying on the bed and looked at me, “Ahem, someone didn’t sleep again last night…”
He was right. I had only slept for an hour in a day and a half and my insomnia had gotten the better of me.
So, I grabbed Phoenix’s leash and snapped on his collar. I gathered up my wallet, phone and car keys and we hopped into his Jeep and took off for a drive. We do this often whether to go get away for 30 minutes or hours. No itinerary or destination but I just talk to him as he sits next to me in the passenger seat and we listen to the radio.
It was when we were headed back to the house that the song above popped onto the radio station we were listening to. And I thought back to when I had first heard it and that won’t-be-defeated feeling I had inside that evening at the farm. All of the many other times I had heard that song, reflected back, and pushed on to whatever was going on in my life.
We got home and I decided to settle down and get back to writing as Phoenix was lying on the back porch step which is his favorite place. I think it’s more of my constant conversation with him that exhausts him than the actual drive itself. And the irony is I’m actually a very quiet person around people. Calm, peaceful solitude is not a neurosis but a blessing to me. Along with my music.
I looked at the computer screen and realized that I needed to purge a large portion of emails that had accumulated and had either been answered or required no further action. I was mindlessly going through this long, tedious process as there were a lot of them. Then I scrolled back up and something odd caught my eye. It was a Twitter email message notification.
Last month I had a teeth grinding, jaw clenching, bad experience with Twitter. I had clicked on a url link from a friend in a Twitter message who unbeknownst to her or me was a virus. And I had just helped perpetuate the virus right on down the line. I was super frustrated because I had the fortune to have about a dozen followers (yes, you read that correctly…only a dozen) and thought to myself, great now I will lose even those people because they will think I sent them a virus. Well, no one deleted me and now I have 29 followers but I’m still not comfortable with Twitter opposed to the other kabillion people on this planet who are.
I returned my look to the screen and the message pleasantly shocked me. I lit up inside.
I hollered for Phoenix, “Phoenix, come here!!!”
I could hear him thundering through the house and he came to a screeching halt a couple of feet away. He sat on his hind end, glared, and then sneered at me, “Now, what did you do?!”
I gave him a double take, “I didn’t do anything! Stop it.”
Phoenix, easing up his look to one of relief, “Oh cool. So, what’s up?”
Me, “This blogger I follow Re-Tweeted one of my posts.”
Me, “No, tweet. She resent one of my Tweets.”
Phoenix, “You are slurring your words. Yes, I would love a treat!”
I was absolutely stoked beyond belief! One gal who follows me on Twitter is a Golden Retriever lover and she had RT’d one of my posts earlier this summer. But, a fellow blogger had never done so. I just couldn’t believe it. It was a really nice gesture and the blogger had the forethought for a half minute in their busy day to that.
I didn’t get to see my mother much growing up and when I did it was often not the most positive experience. But, she firmly instilled in every part of my being some lifelong gifts and traits. To always be polite, have manners and say thank you. Open car doors and doors into buildings for women. Chew with your mouth shut and don’t talk with food in your mouth. To always make sure you not only listen to another but that you actually hear them. There’s a huge difference. And if someone does something nice for you always make sure you thank them sincerely, genuinely and promptly.
I sent a quick note to this blogger to thank them but it wasn’t enough to me. It’s like buying a gift card instead of taking the time to truly shop for something or even make something. In this case none of those were appropriate nor even an option. But, I could write a post and it would make me feel good that I shopped for something in my appreciative heart and made it with my very own words.
As I mentioned in this previous post I was introduced to the world of blog hopping by a lady who has become a very dear blogger friend of mine. And it was through these blog hops that this enormous new world opened up. I’ve met so many wonderful new blogger friends and actually taken an immense, heartfelt interest in their travels, cooking, experiences and day-to-day life sharing that they offer.
They are from all around the world and I have a keen interest in a specific group of them of which I have all subscribed to. There is never an obligation on any level to either read or comment on any of their posts. But, I do so with genuine enjoyment and appreciation for what they have accomplished and continue to move forward with their journey and achieving their dreams. I’ve always made a note in my heart of appreciation to those that continue to come back each week and say hi with a wonderful comment on my site. I know it’s all about, Phoenix, but it always makes my day.
They are all primarily travel bloggers as I enjoy living vicariously through them. On a given Saturday I can hop all around the globe with these wonderfully nice people going from Poland, France, Italy, England, Germany, Belgium, Dubai, Thailand, Japan, China, Australia, New Zealand up to Alaska and winding back down to the continental United States and then to Jamaica. And I know I’m spacing several of them off the top of my head. It’s the most amazing experience for me. And then Phoenix and I get to have these same people give us a virtual visit.
I look forward to thanking each and every one of them individually over time. But, this one today I came across by accident actually before I started doing the blog hops. This was actually the second post of her’s that I read because it was about Austria. And next to Germany it is one of my dream destinations. And well….it’s real short….but give it a quick read and you’ll understand how I was instantly hooked.
This amazing lady works full time and then travels around the world often on the holidays. As with many bloggers I’ve met, English is her second language but you would never know it. She is very friendly and engaging in her Comment section and she responds back to all commenters religiously which I find very appealing. I would encourage you to check it out her wonderful blog at Holiday Nomad.
That little gesture of her’s turned around my entire perspective and made for a really nice weekend. This is my way of saying thank you, Freya! And to all of you, don’t stop believin’.
I will never stop believin’ in myself.
What is your favorite song or songs that inspire you?