Have You Ever...
There was a time in my life, actually several times in my life I've been made fun of for not "knowing" how to "be a man", i.e. hunt, fish, use power tools, or build something. I didn't grow up with a father who was a foreman, I grew up with a father and mother who pushed academics and learning to think for myself.
In my early twenties I liked a girl whose father didn't like me for a few reasons. His beneath the breath remarks sunk in for many years and I doubted my abilities to do some of the simpler things due to the fact I was afraid to ask questions or make a mistake. It's crazy right, the stupid stuff we hold on to, the stuff which causes us to doubt ourselves.
As the years have moved on, I've used my hands from time to time in ways I never imagined they would be used. You can teach a dog new tricks regardless of age and you can also outgrow feelings of yesterday, right now in the present.
I'm still a bright eyed kid who is trapped within an adult body; my wants aren't to fade away quietly, my wants are to bring the ruckus, bring the mother flippin ruckus (Raucous for all of the well versed thespians within the music world). My parents are going to beat my behind if I use another swear word this year!
It's amazing that I was such an athlete for close to three decades yet a couple of people clouded doubt over my abilities. I used to joke with an ex of mine that my friends would come over to hangout and watch sports and then ask, "Where's so and so..." and I would say, "Oh she's out in the back building a fence, would you guys like ice in your tea".
In this day and age which we're currently living in, there are no clear cut gender roles; I for one think that my role within my relationship would be that of a help-mate not one of a boss. IF I'm blessed with an income which would allow my partner to stay home, cool, IF she wants to work, cool, either way both work.
But here I am having to figure this out for myself, figure out how to use my hands and mind. I'm being told that life is more than a camera and landscape.
Last week, a close friend looked at me and said, "We're going fishing". The idea of fishing is cool, I've done it in the past, I liked it, but never fell in love with it, so the thought of going out to fish a decade later off of embankments just didn't seem like a way I wanted to spend my Thursday evening. I went back and forth in my mind of how I could escape having to brave the elements. Maybe an excuse will work, maybe I should just lie about my big toe throbbing, maybe I should not pick my phone up? These thoughts along with others went through my mind until I gave into the fact that fishing was in fact going to be therapeutic.
For the last decade, my hands have been used to do so much and I fail to take hold of this very fact and hold my head up high! I'm not one to say all that I'm involved in hindsight I've been involved in a lot.
Have you ever sat back and remembered a time which made you smile, a time which reminded you that everything was going to be alright, where's Marley at? As we reeled in some keepers and I made my buddy proud by not being scared to unhook and re-hook our catch, I thought to myself, "Damn, you're using your hands..."
Beneath the keffiyeh there's a smile, you can see the eyes smiling back at you as well. I've used my hands to build, I've used my hands to fix, move, hold, and throw. My goal moving forward is to not beat myself up, it's all laid out before us.
I've done more with my hands within than must have done within a lifetime, I need to remember this every time I sit down to write a piece.
Have you ever found happiness and peace when you weren't looking for them to appear? I'm out here, come find me...