Monday, April 12, 2010

Overcoming Obstacles

I had a fabulous weekend, with Sunday really being the capstone. Saturday took me to a meeting, then off to Dallas to spend some time with Pebbles and Slater. We went to a neighborhood art show/sale and had a really nice time. The attendance was pretty low and there weren't a lot of vendors, as the really big art festival was going on in Fort Worth and we were in The Cliff in Dallas. Still, it was a great day to be out and about and we had a nice lunch to boot.

Sunday was incredible! After meditation/church, I went and bought myself a bike helmet. Thanks, Brian, for the tip on the adjustable thingy in the back. I didn't know that and once I found the adjustor, finding a helmet to fit my big old head was a breeze. I went out to the event and spent almost four hours on the bike. I did take a break from riding back and forth along the course to spread out a tablecloth and eat the nice lunch of apples and cheese that I had brought with me in my backpack. Great, great day. Amazingly fun and brutal event. I certainly don't want to do it, but my friends had a blast and are planning on doing it again.

The weekend was also a time of understanding and overcoming some personal obstacles. My discussion of my financial plan with Meg left me with some things to process. Because she's more than just a number cruncher, Meg asked me a lot of questions about how I felt about certain things - cash reserves, for example. When I said I felt like I needed to have more in cash, she asked me why. Turns out, I couldn't articulate why. I made several attempts but just couldn't. We left that question with us agreeing that I needed some more time to process how I felt about that question and why.

We also talked about the next big decision I need to make - whether to buy/rent house or condo. She had run the numbers and asked me what I was leaning toward. I said that I was really enjoying the "no worries" lifestyle of renting an apartment, but most, if not all, condos in this area are out of my price range, but I didn't want the added stress of maintaining a house.

As I was driving over to Dallas, I was thinking about this and the reality of my own past fears struck me. The years immediately following my divorce were especially trying financially. I had a kid in college and was struggling was under a MOUNTAIN of debt, the likes of which make losing a hundred pounds look like a walk in the park. Everything around my home was in disrepair and any little thing that went wrong threatened to derail my entire existence, or so I thought. I lived in fear and reacted with fear to every thing. Yes, it was stressful and anxiety producing and I hated that feeling of powerlessness. On Saturday, I realized that I was pulling forward all those fears into these new decisions.

What if something goes wrong? Well, in order to counteract my fear reaction, I could set up an emergency home repair fund. It was simple as that. I could set up an emergency home repair fund. I could save up and set aside a little money specifically to deal with home emergencies. As silly as it is, when I thought of that, the relief I felt was so intense that I actually started to cry. I don't have to bring forward all those fears, all that anxiety. I can work at saving some money especially earmarked for just those situations.

This is just the latest example of my need to re-examine how I feel about things? Is it really true? Is it true now? Or is it just residual baggage that I'm hauling forward and no longer applies?

Take good care of yourself. Be kind to others. Overcome obstacles.


Photo 1: My friend completing the ropes obstacle.
Photo 2: My yet-unnamed bike and my new helmet.


  1. I think all we know to do is to base our actions/non-action on past experience. While it's great that you're reexamining things, don't be too hard on yourself for doing only what you knew to do.

    TJ Renee has a bike named Roxie. Maybe you should name yours TJ. Jsut a thought.

  2. Time will help you process what it all really means. It's hard to know when there's still healing going on.

    Have fun with the new bike.

  3. That does sound like a great weekend!
    Thanks for your good wishes, I appreciate the sympathy!
    I have similar conversations with my husband to those you describe with your financial planner. I always instinctively say that I want bigger cash reserves 'for safety' while he talks about 'opportunity costs' and leaves me spluttering helplessly. I don't have the specific past financial struggles to look back on that you do, but I did grow up in a family with not a lot of money and I suppose that was enough to leave me similar fears to hold me back.
    I hope realising that there are simple, achievable ways to counteract your fears sets you free to enjoy your life without them! Its amazing how simple the solution can be, and how profound the reaction, isn't it?

  4. I completely forgot about that little tidbit of info on the helmets! I do sympathize with you in trying to fit a brain bucket to large-ish head.

    Congrats too on figuring out/breaking through those old fears. That alone would have made my weekend.

    4 hours on a bike? All at once, fresh out of the gate like that? I don't need to point out what that says, do I?

  5. What a weekend! That muddy obstacle course looks insane - I can't imagine wanting to do that...(watch me end up doing one, lol)

    Your bike is cute but you need fenders if you're gonna ride in the mud! Glad you got a helmet that fits - one of the more frustrating things about bike helmets to me.

    And what a revelation about your house repair/money fears. I am right with you on the panic when something breaks in the house...the repair fund is a great idea.

    Hope you had a great day today!


We'll try this for a while.