Blood, Sweat, Tears and . . .

13297-Do-More-Than-Just-ExistI have a bad habit.  When I am walking along I have a tendency to look at the ground in front of me a LOT. Sometimes my predilection for looking down has caused me pain.

In the summer my husband and I operate a professional lawn care business.  One of my jobs is spreading fertilizer with a big, green commercial spreader.  When the spreader is full it weighs a lot (feels like about half my weight – I have not weighed it) and so, in order to properly use it and not hurt my back or some other important part of my anatomy, I pay a lot of attention to where I am going, and how I am getting there.

I have walked into many low hanging tree branches – bonked myself square in the noggin’ with unbridled enthusiasm – knocked off my hat and sent it, along with my dignity, flying into the grass.

AND  . . . we cannot forget about one of the true HAZARDS of the lawn care business – slipping in dog poop.  Nothing brings me back to reality any quicker than one slick misstep on a lawn where dogs run. I bet, somewhere, folks have watched and found me quite amusing.  Focus, woman!!

My habit for looking down, however necessary when spreading fertilizer, is not as necessary in other aspects of my walking life.  Have you ever been strolling along (maybe it is icy, or it has just rained) and when you are about to enter a building – there on the sidewalk in front of the door is one (or more) huge gobs of snot that some wonderful gent (it generally is gents that do this) has “conjured up” and deposited there for your viewing pleasure before opening the door and entering civilized society?  Man, that is enough to turn your stomach and make you want to keep your eyes on the stars forever more!  But then I may step in  . . .

‘Nuff said on that topic!  One of the places where I regret my habit and struggle to correct it is when I am hiking mountains. It is understandable to watch your feet when you are walking over rough, uneven terrain.  It is also, sometimes, highly advisable if you don’t want to end up at the bottom of the mountain in a hurry.

Humans don’t, as a rule, bounce that well off of rocks.

So one must find the balance between self-preservation and enjoyment of the trip, because if the hiker does not experience the beauty of the place in which he or she is hiking, and revel in the accomplishment of climbing higher and higher by stopping along the way to take in the scenery, why hike in the first place?

As I consider how this balance is achieved, I realize it is an analogy for the way I wish to live my life.

I am an introvert and a dreamer by nature.  I tend to see the big picture – to begin with the end in mind.  I have had to learn, through necessity, to tend to the details.

Dreamers are generally the creative folks in society, I believe – the artists, the performers, the visionaries.  For those of us for whom the “flow” of creativity is our raison d’être, it is sometimes difficult to maintain a solid connection with what the detail folks would consider “reality.”

It has taken me many failed attempts and a few decades of experience to progress to the point where I can attend to the details in an efficient manner.  I can now appreciate the builders, the engineers, the businessmen and women, the organizers and list makers in a way that, perhaps, I missed before.  That would have been a detail I MAY have overlooked!  HA!

At times, I can even speak their language.

I don’t like to stumble over my own feet.  It does not feel good to skin my knees or slip in something slimy.  But, I must admit that sometimes, it is worth it.

Skinned knees and slimy stuff are part of this incredible journey.  Blood, sweat, tears (aka poop and snot rockets) are part of the game if I am to participate fully.

The mountains I choose may be hard to climb and are sometimes really freakin’ scary, but I wouldn’t change one day of the climb for the comfortable, and well-trod trail.

What would be the fun in that?

I will keep looking to the horizon, to the inspiring climb, to the sky . . . and buy a really good pair of well engineered hiking boots!

I have learned there are always sticks for scraping and garden hoses to wash off the bottom of my boots  🙂


Published by Paula D. Tozer

I am a writer, poet and singer/songwriter. I am a Toastmaster, motivational speaker, personal creativity coach, and workshop leader. My most sincere wish is to share my words with others, and that we both benefit from the exchange.

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