Rivalry Week

It’s a rather big week in The Mitten in the world of College Football. A matchup that began in 1898 goes far beyond bragging rights this year. There is a lot at stake in the B1G East. I have always said that there is nothing like October baseball but the past few years, I have changed my tune… There is nothing like the magic of college football in October.

As we prepare to descend on the Banks of the Red Cedar to cheer on our Spartans, I offer you a little nostalgia from one of my favorite rivalries in college football.

“It’s not over, it’ll never be over, it’s just getting started.” – Coach Dantonio

Happy Rivalry Week, Folks!

#HEAVE

CheersDez cursiveslope

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The “V” Word

I was deep in thought over a pile of fresh-out-of-the-dryer laundry. Our son was fast asleep for his afternoon nap and Hubbz was at the grocery store (sidenote: Ladies, marry a man that enjoys doing the grocery shopping… it is life changing. I shit you not.) Anyway, there I am deep in thought, folding the unmentionables and a thought came out of nowhere and smacked me dead in my larger-than-I’d-like Italian schnoz.

The reason I am such a Type A – perfectionist is because if I weren’t, it would leave me open to being completely and truly vulnerable at all times.

I will pause for a moment while you ruminate over that one. Try that one on for yourself while you ruminate. Can you relate? Are you like that too? Maybe you know someone who is?

I will offer you a little backstory. I think I stumbled on this revelation because as I was folding laundry I received a text. Instead of letting myself feel the love and vulnerability of the moment and be connected to the sweet human that texted- I offered a quick, sweet, canned response.Crazy Busy

Which is totally acceptable because…#life.

Can I get a relatableAF shoutout for #busy and #doingstuff

Except…

I was so annoyed with myself. Why couldn’t I just feel the emotion of the moment and embrace the vulnerability? Someone stopped their day to connect with me. It’s such a sweet gesture that it makes my heart poop its pants a little. ♥ I realize that in most cases, my knee-jerk reaction is to not feel the emotion around a moment because sometimes it’s uncomfortable and let’s not negate the fact that vulnerability can often lead to hurt. Instead, I construct an amazing brick wall around the feelings that show up and I let the Type A – perfectionist take over. That part of my personality is great at her job! Homegirl, is expert level with those Jedi mind tricks. It has become so much of a habit and so second nature that I do it without even thinking about it… I think most of us do.

BUT WHY THO!?

millions of peopleSweet humans, why are we so programmed to behave like this? In doing so, we are essentially disconnecting from others. Can I be honest and say this world is entirely too damn disconnected as it is with all of our hiding behind text messages and computer screens. I know for me, when I am letting my Type A -perfectionism take over, vulnerability gets pushed out of sight. While this is ok in some moments, there are plenty of moments where it’s actually hurting more than it’s helping. I thrive being connected, real and transparent with the people in my life. I thrive in relationships when we are able to see each other as we are… a bunch of people doing the best we can with the gifts and talents we have been given. I thrive in knowing about other people and their lives. The good and the bad. What motivates them and what their idiosyncrasies are.

I am the first to admit- vulnerability is TERRIFYING. Showing our imperfections for people to see. Admitting we don’t have it all together. Accepting the fact that we aren’t always right. Owning the truth that sometimes we suck at being human. That is all so very scary…

However.

I read somewhere that “vulnerability attracts honesty, and honesty attracts connection” This makes me ponder… is the deeper root of all of this that I/we are afraid of true and deep connection? If we are connected at a heart-level, is there room to fight over politics, religion or anything else that fills our Facebook feeds with aggression and hatred? If we are connected at a heart-level, does it level the playing field among things that try and drive us apart? If we are connected at a heart-level wouldn’t we be able to see each other as we are… a world full of people doing the best they can.

I look down at my laundry which is now in piles and neatly folded. Each pile separated into the body part they cover- socks, panties, sports bras, pants, tee shirts. Each type of clothing separate in its own pile, but when put on our body, works together to cover the entire thing. I think of each of us. All so separate in our neatly folded lives. It makes me wonder if we could learn to work together, being vulnerable and honest. Could it lead to a connection that could heal our world?

If we could open up just a little.

Put aside the urge to build walls around our hearts.

Being vulnerable, honest and truly connect with another.

Maybe we would hold a hand. 

Maybe we would touch a soul.

Maybe we would change a life.

It all begins with that “v” word…

#vulnerability

CheersDez cursiveslope

 

The Art of Boxing: Round II

Floyd Mayweather Jr., arguably the best defensive fighter to ever dance in the ring, once said “Boxing is real easy. Life is much harder.” Coming from a guy that gets paid to be punched in the face, or rather gets paid to bob-and-weave away, I am taking that as truth.

A recent conversation about life brought my past recording, “The Art of Boxing“, back to the forefront of my mind. I wrote and recorded it in the spring of 2012 and I am blown away how truthful these words still are.

So much changes in the span of 6 1/2 years- yet so much stays the same.

Click the button below and crank the volume on up to listen in.

Listen to the Art of Boxing

CheersDez cursiveslope

This Parenting Thing is Bananas

Our son is almost two and watching a not-so tiny human learn the ways of the world has been fascinating. Being privy to seeing his mind work as he explores this planet for the first time has been one of the coolest things I have ever done. Recently our son was posted up in his big-guy chair at the table eating a banana. Since he’s at the stage in life where he basically thinks he’s 17, he no longer wants his bananas cut up and they must be whole. This fact alone makes my heart ache and I am confident next time I blink he will probably be driving or graduating or getting married… I die. I also digress.
My son was happily chomping away on his banana and it broke in two. If you know anything about almost two-year olds you know that basically when something doesn’t go their way they lose their adorable, insane, almost 2-year old minds. My son lost his bananas over a banana and there was literally nothing I could do to console him. The more I stood there trying to reason with him the worse it got. I showed him now he had two bananas, were before he only had one banana. I showed him how he could hold a banana in each hand and before he only had one banana for one hand. None of that mattered to him because nothing I said could put the banana back together and that was what he wanted. When none of my reasoning worked, I used every Mommy’s secret art- distraction. I pointed to an imaginary bird outside and fed him some eggies using airplane sounds that made him laugh. Disaster averted.
As I laid in bed that night reflecting on my day I replayed the drama over the banana. It got me thinking…
There are going to be many, many, many, more times in our son’s life that I’m simply not going to be able to put the pieces back together for him. This fact makes my heart do this weird palpitation thing and if I can be super transparent, it gives me mild anxiety. It also reminds me that I must cling so tight and white-knuckled to Proverbs 3:5… and while we are at it, probably verse 6 too.
5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; 
6 in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
There is only one place that I can put my trust and confidence and that is firmly in the hands of Jesus. Real talk? Those words are cringe-worthy for a recovering-perfectionist. Not because I don’t believe it or know how but because I have a penchant to control things. Proverbs truth would require that I release my grip on situations and outcomes and hand them over to the Lord – completely.
While we were busy praying for BabyB, God was busy preparing our hearts to love this cool little dude he has entrusted us with. One thing that has become glaringly obvious these past two years is that our son is as strong and independent as a child can be. That independence is going to allow him to soar but it is also going to cause him to stumble. My job in those moments is to be there, steadfast in love, gently guiding his path and pointing him to the truths of God’s Word. I won’t always be able to put the pieces back together but I can point our son to a God that can.
The Terrible Twos have 110% descended on our home and it’s bananas more than it’s not some days. I am learning as I go, and though I like to pretend I do, I don’t have all the answers. What I do have though is a whole lot of faith, endless amounts of love, a repertoire of solid distraction techniques (LOOK! A birdie wearing an ascot!), and the ability to find the humor along the way. Though it may be bananas, I’ve decided that for now, for this season of life, I will leave my anxieties at the foot of the cross and cling to the Truth laid out in Proverbs 3. For this moment, that’s entirely enough.
CheersDez cursiveslope

Of Love and Flower Obsessions

I’m kind of a neurotic nut job when it comes to my plants. It isn’t entirely my fault. When I was growing-up my summer job, in addition to caddying loops at our local country club, was to water the flowers around the house on the regular… and my Ma had 739 million flowers. No joke. All of this time spent outside and countless summers later and I ended up with a bit of a green thumb. Fast forward a couple decades… I ended up being domestic AF and now have 739 million flowers of my own. For the past few years I’ve wanted one of those silly Flower Shower Wands to water my plants with. You know, they are those mini shower heads on the long pole that hooks up to your hose. You can easily water hanging baskets and they give a glorious soft rain-like drink of water to your plants… it’s beautiful and poetic all at the same time… I shit you not.
Though I have wanted one of these silly little Flower Shower Wands, I never bought one because I never wanted to spend the money on one- I am nothing if not frugal… though Hubbz may disagree. 😂 I was outside watering my plants one day and Hubbz showed up after running some errands with a smile on his face and a Flower Shower Wand in his hand. You guys, I literally ran across the yard, jumped up on him and hugged him so hard that I almost knocked him over… and right about now you’re like, uhh why is she blogging this?
Because, you guys, #marriage.
I’m the first to tell you unequivocally, marriage can horribly suck and make you question what the hell you were thinking. There are some days when my marriage vows are literally the most challenging thing I have ever tried to live up to. On the flipside, when I start living sacrificially to please Hubbz rather than myself, marriage ends up being the best thing I’ve ever done… also, let’s just mention living sacrificially goes against everything that is natural for every cell in my body. #realtalk
This seemingly small thing that Hubbz did on a random sunny day isn’t so small when you really look at it. This little prezzy meant he listened to me. It meant he intentionally paid attention to the things he heard me say. It means he prioritized something silly and possibly odd that I wanted. All of these things combined show me that he loves me (yes, I have read the 5 Love Languages and yes, one of my Love Languages is prezzys). 😉
I think about the marriage vows I promised this man and I think about the sacrificial love Hubbz shows me. Then I think about Jesus… because it all points back to Jesus. Hubbz is able to love me like he does- even when I don’t deserve it- especially when I don’t deserve it, because the man loves Jesus first. It’s through this love that he is able to extend love and grace to me. 1 Peter 4:8 tells us “above all, love each other deeply, because love covers a multitude of sins”.
Love covers where we fall short- because we are human and we always fall short.
Love covers when our humanity steps in and gets the best of us.
Love covers on the good days and on the bad ones.
Love covers for better or worse.
For richer or poorer.
In sickness and in health.
Love covers it all.
and I have the Flower Shower Wand to remind me.
CheersDez cursiveslope

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