Wednesday, May 14, 2014

The Fog

Some women have this fog in their life. It's called motherhood, and is probably the worst until the children are school age. Not much can be remembered other than constantly wiping up spills and marks on walls making everything look shiny and clean. There were days when I carried a towel with me just following little feet around to wipe things up. Now that my children are school age I am finding myself coming out of that fog where I never had a chance to stop and rest unless it was to sleep or shower. I gave everything to the little ones and desperately tried to give what was left to my husband. Am I really coming out of the fog?
As my girls got older I decided that it would be a good idea to look at going back to work. I was a teacher long ago. It all came back to me one day when I was at volunteering for a field trip at my daughter's school. I began searching and applying for jobs. I had done this for five years.
 I had distanced myself from my daily household responsibilities, including my children. For a few of these years they became very disrespectful and felt neglected. When I realized what was going on, I slowed down my process of trying to be a teacher and decided that I was being told by a higher power to refocus where I needed to be. Since then, my children have changed. They are respectful. But I see that I missed out on such a huge piece of their life because I was so wrapped up in working again. I think I also go into a habit with my husband of ignoring him and letting him live his own life. We lost all communication. Every opportunity for a connection got lost.I found myself in the fog again. Or did I ever leave?
 A few weeks ago when I needed him most, he was not there. He was not there because I was too busy applying for jobs and trying to proove myself to people outside my family.
I have come to the conclusion that my family is more important and I need to make sure that I make time for them before everything else if I want to get what I need. I think I created a new fog in my job search. It wasn't the fog of raising babies and toddlers, which I call the early childhood mommy fog. It was a selfish fog I created putting a job in front of everything else.
The fog is never easy no matter what the reason, and it is a lonely place that sucks life and memories out of you. Now I take time to see the important things in my life and make sure they are the top priorities. No matter what the reason is for the fog, it can be overcome. Everything else, including the teaching job will come in time if it is meant to be.
No more fog for me, and if I end up in another one, I hope I have goggles to see my way out of it.


Friday, December 13, 2013

Rodeo Girls on TV???

The National Finals Rodeo has been underway this week in Las Vegas but the buzz is not on the barrel racers that are competing there. It is on a new show that launched this week called Rodeo Girls on A&E. The photos and the trailer leading up to the debut showed girls riding their horses around the barrels in shorts and bikini tops. This is pretty unrealistic, but appealing to an audience. I decided to give the show a chance and I watched the first two episodes.
All the miles of driving to rodeos, maintenance of trailer and trucks, and care of the horses was close to realistic, but not shown very often. The focus is around a group of girls. One older million dollar lady whose claim to fame was being married to Jean Claude VanDam, two 21 year old rookies, a veteran barrel racer who travels with her wrangler, and a girl who behaves in a" live in the moment with no worries," attitude.
The show focuses on the social part of barrel racing. There is sex appeal, caddiness, irresponsibility, gossip, back stabbing, and fighting over cowboys. This is what sells on television. It is drawing a crowd.
 However, it is not the typical barrel racing cowgirl. Those of us that hit the rodeo trail and are serious competitors don't have time to gossip and behave in the manner that these girls do. We are actually taking care of our horses, putting hours in on the road, investing many hours into training or correcting issues with the rider or horse, assessing the ground, and getting riding time in the arena it if we get to a rodeo early enough. Even between rodeos, we are thinking and talking about our next ride. It did not seem like this was rarely mentioned in the show.
Yes, I have heard about bikini barrel races, but the girls ranking at the top are not going to be seen entering that. They don't have time for that.  They are driven to win and they are focused on the competetion. These girls on this show must not be at the top. Besides Jean Claude's ex wife, I have never heard of any of them. The only reason I know her is because she was married to him and she made many red carpet appearances with him on television.
Anyway, there you have it. There is my opinion. The show will succeed because it is appealing to the television audience with the drinking, female conflicts, and sex appeal, but it is far from reality of a real rodeo girl.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Holiday Happiness

The feasting of Thanksgiving is over. The holiday season is in full swing. Most of it centers around several types of shopping like retail, groceries, liquor, automobiles, houses, and technology goodies. Well, maybe not so much on the houses and automobiles, but those other shopping items are huge this time of year. After spending Thanksgiving Day, or every day in the month of November recalling all the things that we are thankful for, we rush off to the retail stores to get the best deals of the year, fight crowds, and encounter grumpy people. Sometimes the best deals are not even the ones that we fight for on that Black Friday. People who go shopping a lot know that they can find good deals year round when they pay attention to sales. But the hype is still there during the holiday season. Not only is there a lot of hype but there is a lot of stress. Everyone is wondering what to cook, where to go to get the wanted gifts or special foods, who will be at the house, and keeping a clean house. All of this and so much more that people get consumed with and cause the stress and unfriendliness.
If only people would slow down and enjoy the season. Most of us don't. That causes the reason for the season to be forgotten. My suggestions- First, if feeling rushed or stressed out, don't go shopping at that moment. Go when the mood is calm and relaxed, and you have time to spare. Second, be patient in line. Nobody knows the personal problems of the people around them, but pushing through lines only makes things worse. Lines will be long no matter where you go during the holiday season. Allow the mother with her screaming kids or the elderly couple to get out sooner. Everyone will be happier. Third, come up with the positive things in every experience or every encounter. Dwelling on what did not happen or how awful it was will create a negative mindset and trigger stress and anger. Last, remember that the number of presents you give or recieve does not matter. The reason for the holiday is not to please your family, to see Santa Claus or what he left the kids, the lights, the toys, or the food. It is because Jesus was born. That is the true reason for the season.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Confusion in Complements

It was announced that three girls in my church, who just happened to be friends with me, would be taking over the children's ministry as a team. It was time for me to let them know I was happy for them and congratulate them. Was I really happy for them? I must not have been because when it was time to pay that complement to them, I avoided it. Why can't the words come out of my mouth? Is it really that hard for me to say nice things to other people to share their happiness?
I have been thinking about this for a few days now. What we think in our minds usually ends up coming out in our words. I also think that today's society has created a self centered attitude that keeps us so occupied in ourselves, in our own lives, that we do not look beyond the moments about us. If we just took a minute to think about the people around us in positive thoughts, it probably would be a lot easier to pay them those complements.
Sometimes I find myself thinking about all the faults in my girlfriends or their families. It could be that one always yells at her husband and cannot talk nicely to him. It could be that their house has clutter and is messy. It could be that they did not do the homework for a study and I did. I am judging them. I am thinking well at least I don't yell at my husband, or at least my house is clean. Instead of thinking what could I do to help her?
Our thoughts get so involved in how much better we are than the people around us that it is difficult to find positive words for them. I am going to start training my thoughts. Remember when our parents told us, "If you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all," ? My words are similar. If I can't think something nice about someone, I should not be thinking about them.
Try changing thought patterns to all positve for a few days and see what happens.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Marriage can be tough, but it can also be easy and enjoyable. One thing everyone always wants to do is "fix" the issue when their spouse vents about issues or concerns. Sometimes just lending an ear, not offering advice or opinions, is important. As difficult of an action as this is it is possible and helps build on the relationship.
It could be the husband or the wife. My husband is on the school board and this is a heated political time. New board members are possible being elected or some re elected.  I noticed my husband was very emotional and upset about someone being dishonest in their facts to him. This candidate was stating things to him and when mu husband asked him to back the facts up, he went into a denial and avoided answers. It was as if the candidate was lying to him. He was telling me about it.
Last week at a marriage counseling session, my husband was called out for lying.The counselor was really handing it to him and he was pushing away and making excuses.
As upset as he got while talking to me about the candidate lying, it would have been easy to point out that he lies a lot too. I kept my mouth shut. Because I kept my mouth shut and did not point out that he lies too, I felt like he had a lot more loving response to me. He felt my support. Biting my tongue was hard, but he got to vent and I could tell he was not looking for me to fix it.
My frustration was that I saw someone taking a problem that they have and pulling it out of another person so they don't have to face it personally. My hope is that my husband comes out of all this political stuff facing his issue. I will sit back and be the ears but not speak through it. I want him to love me and not look at me as a controller and push away.
So when we open our mouths, unless asked directly to help with the solution, we only make the problem worse. The conflict begins in the marriage. As soon as we silence ourselves and just listen, the relationship is built up and grows stronger.

Monday, January 30, 2012

rodeo

I love horses. I love barrel racing. I always have. My family does not consist of rodeo participants or ranchers, but somehow I found it. In high school my friends and I would dream of hitting the rodeo trail and getting swept off our feet by the cowboys. It seemed like it was so far fetched. Turns out that dream was closer than I thought, but reaching the goals within it are close to impossible.
After four years in college, without anything but watching rodeos on tv or when they come to town, I had forgotten the dreams from high school. I never thought I would own another horse. I was trsndformed into a city girl.
Two years later, my roots came back. I owned my first horse. A year after that, a move to the country to live on acerage with the horse.  I purchased a trailer and began going to jackpot barrel races. Over the years and through two horses, I am now purchasing my pro rodeo card and trying to get to as many rodeos as possible.
There is a catch. I am on the rodeo trail but I don't leave my home state much and I don't win a lot.
Rodeo has changed so much over the years. It is all about who wins the most money and that person is the one the focus is on. I do this because I love it. I like the thrill, the adrenaline rush when the crowd roots for me,and the good people I meet along the way. The big money winnners are seen along the way, but they breeze in and out and don't talk much. It is sad.
Although I didn't grow up with it, it was around me and the people that competed in it were wonderful people. It wasn't about the money. When did things change???
It is also a challenge to reach the goals within the sport because I want to be able to compete at Cheyenne Frontier Days, National Western Stock Show, Ft. Worth and many other big rodeos. Getting there when you don't have an automatic horse or did not grow up in a rodeo family is next to impossible. I won't give up. I will keep trying. I can say that at least I am living my dream of being in rodeos, and I can only hope that someday rodeos will go back to what they used to be. A time where everyone went and had fun. There  and everyone helped everyone out and talked to them no matter who it was. Money has gotten in the way of that.