Wednesday, October 6, 2010
it's been how long...?
Break Away (intransitive verb)
1 : to detach oneself especially from a group : get away
2 : to depart from former or accustomed ways
3 : to pull away with a burst of speed
The word break always has intrigued me. It means so many things. For instance, I love breakfast. I would break away from the pack in past track years. Taking a break and going on vacation. Getting a break on the price. I had to break into my car when I locked the keys inside. I broke ground on the new deck addition. I broke my knee skiing. My divorce broke my heart. My daughters loveliness breaks my heart. Breaking the silence. Breaking the news. Breaking 80 golfing. Breaking a sweat. Give me a break.
It goes on and on.
Variations of the word break, in so many forms, meaning so many things, pop up daily.
A few weeks ago I was dismayed to find that several of my fellow bloggers, ones that I adored and read religiously, decided to take a break. To stop blogging. There are several others that have stopped blogging because they are now focused on writing in other forums. Such as working on books.
I dig that. I get it. I understand.
I was also disappointed.
Add to that a slight downtown in my usual positive attitude and I decided to take a break myself. It wasn’t anything that I actually did intentionally. It just kind of happened. I didn’t sit down and say, “Nance…take some time. Don’t write on your blog. Don’t read any blogs. Just. Don’t.”
I didn’t have that conversation in my head. It just happened.
One day turned into two. Two days turned into five. One week turned into two and now here it is, almost four weeks since my last posting and I felt I had something to say.
My down turn happened basically due to a close friend giving me some ‘friendly advice’. I took it. I don’t know why, but I did. He said, “focus your energy and attention on something that matters. Your blog doesn’t matter. You’re not going to make any money on your blog.”
Who said anything about money? Did I start this to make money?
I mean yes, you read about those bloggers that now that it's their work. That they now employ several people to maintain their blog. But c'mon. Me? I don't see me being the next Dooce. (although, wouldn't that be nice! One can only dream...)
I should’ve dismissed his criticism right there. Not listened to another word. I mean, sure, making money is a great thing…it allows us to afford things, or do things that perhaps we wouldn’t have thought of doing before because we didn’t want to spend the money on it. Last year I received a payout from a life insurance policy my mother had. It was bonus money in my eyes. So I did something out of the ordinary with it.
I should’ve replaced the furnace.
Maybe bought a few new green windows, or solar panels.
But instead we went to DisneyWorld…the happiest place on earth.
And we had fun.
Lots of it.
We ate out. We stayed out late. We woke up early. We got room service. We stayed at a luxury Disney hotel. We lived like Kings. Or queens and princesses’ actually, but you get the idea.
My mother was smiling down on our festivities. We smiled right back up.
But my friend has a way of turning everything into a way of making money. Or the thought of HOW it could make money. I have a sewing machine that does embroidery. He feels I should do something with that to make money. Sell my embroidered items on eBay or etsy. I have a knack for display. He feels that I should send resumes to Cedar Point, Disney and all the department stores. I’m a good cook. He thinks I should package my sauces or spices for sale in stores. (I’ve already done the catering thing and that, my friends, is just too much work and stress…for me.) It goes on and on…
I get a little tired sometimes of listening to this banter. I like to do things because I enjoy them, not because it might have the possibility of making me money. Of making me rich.
It may be naïve, but I think that a person is rich because of their experiences. The love, the friendship, the joy of doing things and being with people that make you smile. That make you enjoy life. I think that if you do what you enjoy then you are truly both blessed and rich.
Not everything comes down to money. To dollars. To cents.
It annoys me.
I listened. I thought about it. I did lots of things this past month. I’ve worked hard, and I’ve played hard. I went golfing several times. That was lots of fun. I love this time of year on the golf course. I’d forgotten how much I enjoyed it. I used to belong to a golf club. I lost that membership with my divorce. Sure there are many public courses around to play at, but I don’t know anyone to play with. When at the club, Tuesday mornings were a given. It was the day the ladies played. 9am tee off. Simple as that.
I played with the A-group. Chris Grace, Ellie Colton and Nita Doyle. They were the old timers, the club regulars. When I joined the Country Club, they for some reason, took me under their wing. Between the three, all of them were always in the running for Club Champion. Ellie took her golf pretty seriously. She was a great golfer. Steady. Sure. She could always score. Chris also was a good golfer. She was just a little wild at times, but could pull off shots that would make Tiger Woods take off his hat in respect. Nita was a par player. Tee shot. Chip shot. Two putt. Tee shot. Chip shot. Two putt. Steady as she goes. No wild card there.
I was the newbie. The rebel. I had a strong tee shot and a good short game. I was either On. Or I was Off. Not much in between. I had, at the time, a higher handicap, but could play. I helped their game. I was the wild card that could make our team win the tourneys. Or not. It all depended. But there was always the steadies to make the score. I was just the gravy. With all the regular play I had (at least twice a week with the ladies and once or twice on the weekends) I mangaed to lower my handicap to a 7.
Not bad at all.
I played a course last weekend that I hadn’t played in twelve years. Elyria Country Club is a gorgeous course. Designed by William S. Flynn who designed other beauties like Shinnecock on Long Island, Homestead Cascades in Virgina and Cherry Hills in Colorado. There are two other courses in Cleveland that he designed and they are both great challenges as well. I remember playing it with the A-team a decade ago on a club swap day. The 12th hole is a par three 165 yard beauty with an elevated tee box down to the green. I mean elevated. Like 50 feet elevated. It’s a gorgeous view and just a tad intimidating. If you miss left, you’re all right. Miss short and your in the water. Miss right, you’re in the sand. Miss long and it’s in the trees, baby.
As I stood on the tee box looking down I wondered which club to pull. I could hear the ghosts of the A-team deciding what to use. Ellie taking out her 4 iron. Chris with her 5 wood. And Nita with her 3 wood. I normally would hit an iron here, but today there was a headwind making the hole play more like 180 or 190. I nodded to my ghosts of the past and played a 3 wood. The wind took it a little right and I was pin high, but in the sand. No worries. I could see my ball.
It was interesting hearing those voices of long ago, from a seemingly different life, spring up in my head. It was a glorious afternoon. I was basking in the beauty of the course, the time spent playing. It took me back to a time when I didn’t think about money or how to make it. I hate to admit this, but I was busy living my privileged life and was thinking about whether or not I should buy that new driver in the club pro shop. Bah to me. Taking that all for granted. Then my divorce.
I no longer had the club membership. So I no longer played.
For some reason it took me two years to take out my golf clubs again. Somewehere in my brain golf was the one thing that I could control since the rest of my life seemed to be in shambles. I was on the course when my marrige came spinning to a close. On the back nine. Hole niumber 16. I just walked off the course. I heard people talking about it in the clubhouse. I heard whispers among the waitstaff. I saw the looks in peoples eyes. I started getting flowers from other club members delivered to my house. Flowers? Really?
I was humiliated. And I never went back.
I left everything in my beautiful wood locker with the brass tag with my name on it. I left my extra shoes that were being cleaned by the locker attendant. I left my trophy winning the tournament out at Springbrook in the trophy case. I only took my clubs, put them in the back of my car and drove away never to see the caddies, the valets, the waitstaff ever again. I no longer could, even if I wanted to, play with the A-team again.
But, it's okay.
That was eleven years ago. A lifetime.
Almost the same as it feels when I hit this publish button. Three weeks gone in the blogosphere? THAT’S a lifetime. Fact is, no one may even read this posting? I may have lost all the contacts that I had out here. The internet has replaced my space with someone else and now I’ve got to fight the curtain back to make room for myself again.
And then again, maybe not.
Maybe I’ll see comments from those that I’ve come to regard almost like family. Like Heather and Carlos and Chrissy and Katherine and Ron and Indigo. There might be a word from Julie and Lora and Lisa and Christine and Becky and Angelina and Kim. There are so many of you that I can’t even name you all, but you know who you are. And I know who you are.
I feel badly about not being around. About not being here.
It was a break.
A break away. Away from my friends.
Geez. And here I thought I didn’t have anything to say. Well, lookie there pal...I guess I did. I’m not making any money on this little blog of mine. But Bah to the naysayer’s. Who really cares!
Oh...Thanks for agreeing with me.