Feel like a phony?

02Last week I had dinner with a friend and he felt the need to point out that I belong. I constantly second guess myself and any abilities that I do or don’t have which may be why I start a lot of things and don’t finish them all or I do some things really well, but the little bits that would make the completed project perfect are crap.

Maybe I do this to prove to myself that I am a phony.

Some times

Really I just feel like a phony a lot and never quite feel worthy of the things that I have worked for and the accomplishments that I have earned. I’m a mish mash of ideas and thoughts and theories that make an interesting person who doesn’t want to talk about them so when they come out on paper they make me sound mad.

I can talk shop with anyone…to a point. I don’t share my best ideas and I often hold back from the conversation all together. If I talk to you with any depth it’s because I’ve decided your trustworthy. But I still don’t share. Not vocally.

I share here, but even there I haven’t shared much in the last year and a half. I have plenty going on I just don’t want to sound showy or “Hey, hey, look at me now!” So many of the bloggers that I connected with at the inception of this blogging journey are still struggling with their finances and lifestyles. I’m not. Sure I have problems, but they are nothing when compared to the stories that I read and the struggles that I have faced and I feel like a phony finding a complaint. Clearly this isn’t a humor blog. I don’t do obvious humor.

I feel it is now my mission to not dawdle in the past strife, but to build up others as much as possible. How can I share a piece of the good word, a good idea, a good thought that may make a day brighter. Likewise I share stories of others that need to be shared because it’s news that you won’t see unless you’re looking. That takes a lot less space, so it’s all on Twitter or Facebook (Friend me I will accept).

Often I feel like a phony, an imposter, a person who does not deserve all this goodness. I feel the past follows me like a cloak waiting to wrap itself around me in a swift wind. Not that it warms me, but it makes me cold. The emotions of the craziness that didn’t feel crazy until I stepped away and looked back. I feel like someone somewhere is just waiting to throw the cloak on me even though I’ve grown up, I’ve changed, and there is so little of that person remaining. That sad girl who wanted so much to feel the warmth of love and being needed that she clung to the first person who passed her way. I still haven’t figured that out. Why did the thing that damages have to be the thing that stuck for so long?

That may be a question I can never answer.

I feel like a phony to have bigger dreams. To want to be and do more in this world. All the dreams I write about on this blog…I want to see them realized, but that cloak of doubt keeps the fear inside me. I don’t deserve my dreams to become reality because I didn’t do this or that, or I don’t look a certain way.

Why is that? How many of you feel this way? How many of you hold yourselves back because you don’t feel worthy?

Damn it – FEEL WORTHY!

I say this to myself as much as I say it to you.

We belong. We have earned it. We fight for it daily.

The things we have accomplished are worth talking about. Every day little wins are worth sharing. Letting people know that this day is an awesome day because you woke up and set out to conquer the day is worth being said!

Don’t be afraid. You are not a phony.

Surround yourself with positive reinforcement and bring light to the world.

When you see that light in someone else – that kinship – reach out to them!

It’s only by building ourselves and others up that we finally begin to feel worthy.

For a bit of inspiration tonight watch:

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A Poem: Bird

Life is funny
It can’t be seen
Constantly directed behind the scenes.
We follow a path drawn on a cloud
Get lost, wander, find our way around
As years pass we plant our roots
Get married, have kids,
Grow radiant in the light
Leave our dreams to the night.
Then we age a year in a day
Suddenly aware that change is near
Funny this life
We built solidly seems
To trickle away like falling leaves.
A season has passed
Our roots cannot hold us
Dreams pursuing us
One day we wake
We realize
We were the bird
Not the tree.
We are free to fly
From sea to sea.

Birds, Gulf of Mexico photo by Me

Birds, Gulf of Mexico photo by Me

Jobless isn’t the end of the World – Right?

What do you do when you are faced with a problem?

Do you tuck tail and hide? (Because that’s what I feel like doing.)

Do you ignore the chatter and rise from the ashes? (Hope to do)

Eat pumpkin anything and gain 20 pounds? (As I type I am eating delicious pumpkin bread pudding…and it’s amazing!)

Here is the problem – and it’s not really a problem – just something else on the path to understanding. I am losing my job. I have been here since April 2012, and I have worked my tail off letting everything including this blog suffer and for what? To be told that since your boss was a bad boss we had to let him go and since we have a whole team assembled who can do your job in another city we are going to let them do it.

Sure, they have offered to move me to one of two locations – without an increase in pay – one is in the middle of desert surrounded by the pollution that I loathe and the other is deep in hickville away from proper civilization. I don’t require much, but for a girl who loves theater, symphony music, and museums…hickville’s not going to cut it.

So I am here…arriving at decision time with three months to decide my fate.

Pulled from Google Images - If you know who made it I will give them full credit.

Pulled from Google Images – If you know who made it I will give them full credit.

I guess it’s really not three months, more like two and a half, but it is also right at the holiday season when NO ONE wants to hire!

It would be perfect if I could leave here at the end of the year, take a week off, and start right up somewhere else, but to get them to even look at my resume. No actually it would be perfect if “they” could find a way to keep me for at least a few more years, or if they could pay me more, or if I didn’t have to be on the road 3 hours a day just commuting to and from work.

I figure that’s just part of life living in one of the most spread out cities in the country.

I get excited at the idea of leaving…but where would I go? What will I do? Where will I live?

Do I move to get out of a city full of smog?

Do I find something that keeps the rest of my life as it is and just humbly soldier on?

Honestly, I do have responsibilities here.

I lead a Cub Scout den. I will start leading Danielle Laporte’s Desire Map book club for the “South of Houston” area in January (I would have to give that up – and I don’t wanna.) I am a member of a church that I have grown to love and get excited to attend every week.

I would love to work locally though, heck – I’d love to work from home! Wouldn’t that be awesome! I could do a lot if I worked from home. I would save money and not be on the road so much. I don’t think it will happen, but it is fun to dream.

I feel stuck. I shouldn’t because I have time, experience, and options on my side.

I feel let down because something I thought would last is ending.

I feel nervous because of timing and possibilities. Fortunately some of those possibilities are out of my control and with a little prayer and meditation the nervousness can be tempered.

I also feel excited by those possibilities. What could happen if I just step out of this shell that I’ve encased myself in? What if I find exactly what I am looking for in a job and career?

What if something amazing happens because now I get to look for it out in the open without recourse by my employer because they told me to see what’s out there?

Now time to reread my post from last week…I think that line of thinking is key to my next step.

Until next time –

Just found on Raw for Beauty’s facebook page, by way of the Desire Map group. It’s long but so beautiful and appropriate for this post.

What makes You itch?

What makes you itch? ~Alan Watts

I love that.

I hear that and so many ideas come to mind. Writing the great American Novel, Globe School, having a Bed and Breakfast, being a stay at home mom, or being a successful independent business woman. But what really makes me itch? More pointedly, as Alan asks at the end of the video

“What do I desire?”

All kinds of things.

Galveston Beach - Sunset September 29

Galveston, Sunny Beach, Sunset – September 29, 2013

I challenge you to ask yourself every morning while you are brushing your teeth,

“What do I desire today?”

Where will you be if you work to create the feelings inside of you that fulfill that desire?

Do you desire happiness? This is a choice made each day. Make it and own your happiness.

Do you desire freedom? We are not as free as we once were, but we are as free as we want to be to drive down the road with the top down, to run around the beach, to go out into the world and experience it. We are free to be ourselves. Claim your freedom.

Do you desire love? This is trickier, but I think you must love yourself broken and bruised before anyone else can love you. Until the day you meet someone who is the shining reflection of your inner light keep yourself a work in progress.

Don’t let yourself be defined by the people who may have broken you before.

You are worthy of love. Believe it.

But these aren’t really what this video is about. This video is about way more than that.

Alan Watts is speaking about the quality of your life.

“What would you do if money were no object?”

Imagine for a moment that you are the most wealthy woman (or man) to ever inherit money on the planet and never had to work another day in your life.

How would you fill the hours?

Would you paint?

Would you write?

Would you buy a farm and tend the land?

Would you fight for the causes that cause you the most heartache?

Would you simply live life and raise a family?

Would you spend your life in selfish pursuits? I’m not judging, it’s a valid choice.

Dock for Post 10-10

Galveston Bay, Sometime in April, from the balcony of Noah’s Ark Cafe

I think I would not hesitate on globe school a moment longer. My sons and I would head out as soon as the money was in the bank! But even traveling and educating them would leave me with a hole, a void that would need to be filled.

I do not exist in a vacuum. I see through the façade too easily to be able to live so solitarily for too long.

After our journey I would buy a B&B somewhere and settle into writing books and cleaning toilets and making delicious gourmet treats. I would find a way to give back to the community.

But life isn’t this way. We have to work. We have to live. We have to make money for the things that pay for the fact that we live in the world we do.

On second thought and as Alan Watts states in the video,

“If money IS the only thing, then you will spend your entire life completely wasting your time.”

I have moments where I know I am completely wasting my time. I do too much that I have to do and not enough of what I want to do. I ignore the desires. I hide in my happiness because that is a choice I make each day, but it’s not always how I feel.

That’s not right!

We all enter the world with a purpose that is ours to discover and we are blessed with the abilities to do it, whatever “it” is.

Money is a means by which we have to live, but it should not define us.

What if we stopped focusing so much on monetary value and started to focus on our worth?

What if we focused on our passion?

What would you do?

Would you write? Would you paint? Would you have more children? Would you give of yourself to charity?

It is baffling, but there are actually people who love to sit at a desk all day maintaining ledgers and making the world run.

What if we each did what we were meant to do instead of what we have to do?

So much of our daily activity is soul crushing and menial.

Statistically as our society and culture became center more on money, than on pursuits of passion, the need for mental health treatment has risen – dramatically.

That should tell you something.

We have problems because we were not made to have money as our only focus. We were not made to be slaves to a clock or to sit in cubes and offices all day doing nothing but mindless tasks.

We were made to create!

We were made to be free!

We were made to love and live on this miraculous planet.

So, what makes you itch?

“Being In Service to Something Larger Than Yourself”

Every day we are told to do what is best for our own self-interests.

Do whatever you need to do to give yourself the best life possible, who cares what happens to everyone else. They are not your problem.

I can’t get over how wrong I think this idea of life is…I am not the only one.

I personally think that nature is the best teacher for this and it’s in nature that you can see how interdependent we are meant to be.  We are not meant to be islands unto ourselves. It may be a dog eat dog world, but it wasn’t supposed to be.

I envision a world where we are each dependent upon each other. No one has to go without because there is plenty to go around. I don’t think it’s socialist to change and equate the systems. There is no reason for poverty and homelessness. There is no reason for greed and persecution. There should be no place for these things in our world.

Yet they are everywhere.

What do you suppose would happen if we chose to live a different way?

What do you suppose would happen if you reached out and helped those around you?

Watch this video. I am not the only one who has a new vision for our planet.

We are not individuals. We are all one. We have to grow beyond that thinking.

 

“Bow into service.”

Become “the more beautiful world your heart knows is possible.”blog

Have you been Wrecked?

Have you been wrecked?

This is a simple question asked in an email from Jeff Goins. Actually the email contained his manifesto, “Wrecked for the Ordinary: A Manifesto for Misfits.” In bold print on page two – “MOST PEOPLE DON’T KNOW WHO THEY ARE.”

So of course I had to continue reading.

If you have been following this blog or stopping by temporarily to catch my latest ramblings you know that I have been writing out who I am. Figuring out who I am and how I relate to the world around me. Trying to figure out how to make a typical existence work for me when everything inside is screaming that I shouldn’t.

I call it my gypsy soul, but I wonder if it is something more.

I am the “I can do that” person that always wants to do more for others and help, but never quite seem to fill the void that makes me want to do these things. I want to join in every charity that my heart wants to help despite my brain saying, “You have no time for this!” I get over run with things to do and never quite do any of them very well because I am always thinking about the next thing that has to be done.

As Jeff writes, “ [I am] struggling to find meaning in [my] everyday life. [I am] floundering, lost in a cloud of insignificance and mediocrity.”

This is hard to admit that I do all of these things trying to fill the void that exists when I try to just live a normal life. I know many, if not most, of you don’t understand this void, or if you do you have learned to control it. I have tried everything from living life on the edge with craziness and an alcoholic spouse to just struggling every day to provide for my family. I haven’t figured it all out, but no matter how much there is TO Do I never quite feel fulfilled.

“They strive. They long for what they can’t have and thus despair, perhaps growing a bit disillusioned.”

To despair is to be hopeless and I am anything but hopeless. I think I have enough for what could be, but living life as I do every day makes the feeling of “hopelessness” exist. I get up, I get dressed, I wake the boys and get them ready, the nanny/babysitter arrives and I leave for work, drive 40 miles one way to my office and proceed to work 9-10 hours and go home. I drive the 40 miles back home, pick the kids up for whatever activity we have that evening OR if I have charity meetings in town I drive to that, do that, and THEN drive the 40 miles home…I get home in time to eat dinner, read a story and lay the boys down to bed. We repeat this 5 five days a week and you have some idea of how much time I spend chasing my wheels.

I know this is not the first time I have lamented this, but it is to make this point again, that there is more to life than this.

There is no amount of time that I spend away from home all day that justifies the void that I feel when I lay down at night. No matter what I have filled the time I was awake doing there is still that voice inside that says I should be doing more.

What? When? It isn’t possible!

It’s impossible to think that there is any way I could do more in present circumstance, so I have to seek a way to change the circumstance.

Hey – It’s not the first time.

Back to line one, “Have [I] been wrecked?”

There is both a resounding yes and a humble no. I have been wrecked by always striving for a life that I don’t think I will ever have. I have been wrecked by homelessness and insecurity. I have been wrecked by the daily struggle of every single mom who may or may not have enough money to make it to her next payday. But I have not seen first-hand how hard life could be. I have not walked into a village of people whose life is put on the line every day just to provide for their families. I have not reached beyond myself to grasp the hand of a dying man because he wanted to connect with life.

I haven’t forced myself to fill the void that exists.

I have tried repeatedly to close my ears to a calling to a higher purpose.

Jeff says, “At first, it’s disorienting – maybe even distracting. It calls out of you the greatest parts of you – the parts you might be afraid to let out.”

“In the end, you’re not who you were before. You’re different. You’re changed. You may even feel like your old values have been, in a sense, ruined by this new worldview.”

So I am seeking answers to where to go from here. Globe school for the boys will be a big part of this, but I think it is evolving from a purely selfish idea into something where I can act compassionately with a group of like-minded individuals. I’ve asked the only friend I know who left his life in pursuit of compassionate action how he knew it was the right choice when he did it. I am hoping he can help me as I have to walk down this path. I am not built for apathy and ignorance is a four-letter word to me.

The void must be filled, the thirst must be quenched.

Life must be meaningful, status quo will never work for me.

179968_10200921022567273_1295511188_n

Courage to be…me

In 2009, I had this idea for a blog so that people could learn from my life experience before they stepped out their front door and got burned. I never wrote it. It may still be out there, somewhere, in cyberspace, ready and waiting for me to write it, but that will never happen.

Instead I moved to New York.

I packed up my car, my kid, and my husband and left in search of something.

Do you know that feeling when nothing that you are doing is who you are and you need to change your life dramatically to keep from being put into an asylum?

You don’t? You’re lucky.

changes%20next%20exit

I used to have that feeling often. Instead of complaining one more time I left.

In search of me – thinking I would find her somewhere other than where I was located.

I had a lot of fun meandering up the Atlantic coast. I didn’t originally set out for New York, but that was where we ended up. We settled into life in Central New York in my brother’s third floor walkup.

Luckily, things worked out. We had a fun time (until we didn’t).

Though, I still didn’t find me.

Where was I? Surely I was supposed to go far from home, and I would find me hidden in the bushes. I would rise to greatness (or at least happiness).

I would sprout invisible wings and fly!

It didn’t happen, nothing happened…except a deep seated unhappiness from being the cause of disappointment…again.

By the end of September 2010, my husband and I had given up on each other. We were incompatible for a number of reasons and I have shared the tale within this blog. I won’t repeat the sadness, but I will say that I felt the tie sever. After 10 years in an alcoholic/codependent relationship it was about damned time!

It was at the end of February 2011 that I sat down and typed my first blog post. I was sitting in my son’s hospital room with my shiny new laptop and just started writing.

I had been reading blogs for many for years. I had been inspired by them to change my life so drastically and ultimately it was the blogs that brought me back home. The posts that spoke of home and family with such reverence that I couldn’t help but long for the familiar, even as familiar as our life had become in isolated dysfunction.

I wanted to see my family.

I wanted to be home again.

I wrote almost daily for the first few weeks of this blog. It was more of a diary than well written or thought provoking, eloquent posts on American life. I found a family of fellow bloggers that understood my struggles and would offer sage advice.

I lamented single motherhood with a 5 year old and a 6 month old, and people wrote to me that they understood! I found solace in a community of “stranger friends” when I wrote about the relationships in my life.

And then it happened.

I found me.

Somewhere between the words I found out that I was right here all along. I didn’t need to go about the world looking for me. I need to go inside and write it out.

I needed time alone with me.

Blogging is like this for some.

You spend all your time in your head getting the words to screen and you discover that everything you needed was inside you. It was there and if you had just been still enough, if you had just been quiet enough, you would have figured it out.

It was like a whisper in the breeze at first. Then the muse becomes more apparent and then you find your voice.

I found fulfillment in my words, writing through the pain and the struggles.

I discovered compassion for myself and others.

Compassion asks us to go where it hurts, to enter into places of pain, to share in brokenness, fear, confusion, and anguish. Compassion challenges us to cry out with those in misery, to mourn with those who are lonely, to weep with those in tears. Compassion means full immersion in the condition of being human. ~Henri Nouwen

Through blogging I found clarity.

Appearance blinds, whereas words reveal.~Oscar Wilde

Over the course of the last two years I found the courage to just be me.

I think if I hadn’t started blogging it would have taken a lot longer to get here. By making who I am more public and accessible I have to hold myself accountable. I have left myself vulnerable to people who stumble across my blog. I’ve become unapologetic about the content, the dissension, the thought provoking meanderings, and the whimsical smatterings of my dreams.

I am so thankful to all of you who come back to read every post.

Late last week I stumbled upon a hashtag on Twitter for #TXBloggers, then I found hashtag #BlogElevated there are so many meanings to that – to blog elevated.

My mind goes on overdrive when I ponder the words. Blog Elevated, I don’t know what meaning they want us to infer but I find myself wanting to be more profound. More eloquent. I want to dive deeper into compassion. I want to leap into globe school. I want to wage war against ignorance.

I want to find more of my heart’s desire.

Blog Elevated is a conference. Our very own conference right here in HOUSTON! I couldn’t believe it. I am hoping to go. I hope that I can learn about taking Small Wonders & Other Thoughts to the next level. I hope that you all will go along for the ride. It promises to be fun and educational.

If you happen to be in the Houston area in the middle of September and want to go with me the link to register for Blog Elevated is here.

blog-elevated-flyer

(I hope you all can make it!)

The Cusp of Homelessness

Do you remember in History class learning about the troubles of the Great Depression?

How the stock market crashed and the population who had once only been poor grew destitute?

Do you remember reading The Grapes of Wrath in English class?

What about the old Life magazine photos?

One of the most popular photos of the Great Depression.

One of the most popular photos of the Great Depression.

The soup kitchen lines and the trail of dust behind the model T as it took off across the plains?

These images and stories are sealed into our minds because we think of how bad they had it and how far our country has come. We have the resources to create the best future imaginable for humanity – as a whole.

Why don’t you metaphorically close your eyes with me for a moment?

(I’m going to write a story.)

Meet Anna

Meet Anna

Monday morning Anna awoke. She knew she should go to work, but in her mind she had been reeling from the stress of having to hold it all together. She knows that everything will work out as it should, but there is still this shrill voice of consciousness. The voice that keeps her from sleeping properly or from stepping out on a limb because if things change in life her house of cards could come tumbling down.

So, Anna stayed home. She hugged her children tight. She made oatmeal for breakfast. She turned on the television to find the cable disconnected. Oops, she thought, I guess I need to call them. It was the first time she had been that late on a bill since he left. Oh well, it would work out.

After breakfast she wondered outside to check the mail. Pink and Yellow and Red notices abound. Anna takes all the mail inside and puts it with the rest of the collection. She opens the utility bills and plans her conquest. They will be paid but how will they eat?

The job that Anna stayed home from is by all accounts a great job. She has a good opportunity to make an impact and learn. Monetarily it is enough, but only just. When Anna’s friends talk about vacations and home remodeling she smiles sweetly and looks away before anyone catches the flash of sadness in her eyes. Enough does not equal enough for a new t-shirt much less a vacation. Though in her dreams she is transported to many exotic places and has lovely adventures. Some day she will make those dreams a reality, until then it is enough.

This particular Monday Anna calls her friend Janie who is in a worse situation. She works long hours for a pittance. Janie struggles to make the ends meet every month and she makes it, but only because she goes without so often. Janie asked if she would like to go to the food bank. Hesitant Anna says, “Yes.”

There is stuff in the fridge, but not enough to make a whole meal. Anna hadn’t been to the food bank in years. The last time she had gone was during a period of unemployment and struggle to sustain that lasted a few months. She had lost her job due to downsizing, but was still expected to maintain life. After going through savings and the support available Anna found a job paying just enough to keep her in her home.

Actual line for a food bank in Galveston County. The lines of cars have doubled in less then two years.

Actual line for a food bank in Galveston County. The lines of cars have doubled in less then two years.

Monday morning they arrived at the food bank to find over 100 people already in line, after an hour there were 100 more. The cars went for a mile on both sides of the road and the occupants stood patiently outside trying to stay cool in 100 degree heat. Anna and Janie eventually wove their way through the line. They received just enough for a week of meals; most people could come every week.

Looking around Anna saw many types of people. Some looked as tentative as Anna felt, this was perhaps their first time in the line to accept whatever is given to them. Others looked upset about having to ask for help. Parents with concerned looks on their face watched their children…perhaps they were pondering their own utility bills and stress.

Anna noticed the children smiling and playing and making new “stranger friends” as one child put it. They didn’t know that this was the line of last resort. They didn’t know that their parents had been turned down for assistance program after assistance program, because their parents make too much, but not enough. The voice in Anna’s head that had been shouting at her all morning calms as returns to her car. She will be able to get through with just enough.

She drops Janie off then heads home to load her fridge. She hopes that someday the stars will align and she will get to experience a life of excess. She prays to God thanking him for his blessing. Moments later her children run in with smiles and laughter. Anna knows loving them is enough. Whatever else may happen, if she can love she will make it through.

Now open your eyes and look around you.

How many of you have experienced hardship?

How many of you have witnessed the struggle that is emerging in our nation?

How many of you know that this story is a story repeated in every neighborhood in the nation?

We can work to hide the problem, we can look the other way, but it is there staring us in the face. It is a problem that needs to be corrected. We have the tools to fix it – so why is the problem increasing instead of diminishing?

As I have worked with charities and accepted endless donations “to the cause” as I call it. I see so many people who work hard. They work every day to make their ends meet and yet they still come up short. These are the good people who feel their responsibilities and try to make life work with what they’ve worked to earn.

They feel the failure when they have to accept help.

They are the working poor.

By all accounts I am well paid compared to someone who works for retailers or restaurants. I work 40 hours a week 8 to 5 and pay my bills. I make just enough to squeak by. I am blessed and I don’t know how the millions upon millions of people who make less than I do every month make it work.

The last few months I have been working on a program to provide homes to homeless men and women across the city of Houston. I am one of the charity’s involved social media person, sharing the latest on the projects and giving personal stories of those affected. This is an important task as we move into the future, giving homes to people who need them from buildings that stand vacant.

This, however, is not the solution.

In Anna’s story she could be homeless if she ever lost her job. She is on the cusp of homelessness.

I believe many crimes, societal problems, and mainly, homelessness are preventable.

What would happen if Anna lost her job? What if the motor or transmission went out on her car and she couldn’t get to work? What would happen if Anna’s children got sick? Her house of cards would fall.

I hope this is just a prompt to start a conversation.

Please comment – positive or negative on my belief of prevention.

Next time you have the opportunity to donate time (not money or goods, but time) I think you should spend some time helping the poor.

Learn from them. Grow from them.

Become a link to opportunity for them.

I've always loved the perspective of Anne Frank, she may have been very young when she died, but she was wise beyond her years.

I’ve always loved the perspective of Anne Frank, she may have been very young when she died, but she was wise beyond her years.

Edit: I referenced the Great Depression because a lot of things are happening in the world similar to what happened before the fall of the economy. I got lost somewhere along the way as I have been known to do…oh well. 🙂

The Inevitable Inspirational Research

Monday I shared this blog about starting Globe School. I have spent some down time during the day re-researching this insanity.

I just wanted those who read to know that I think it is slightly insane to leave everything you know and everything you’ve been taught to believe behind. As adventurous as it is – as much as I want this – there (in the world) is still that voice inside and out there that says this is impossible.

For the sake of my life I hope it is not.

Do I think this will be easy? No. I think it will be very hard, but perhaps it won’t be as hard as I imagine. I will no longer be able to tell my children that if they don’t behave we will go straight home!

Home will be where ever we are.

I have learned however that I am not the only person who would rather spend their lives traveling than as a random citizen. I am not the only one that has ever sought to teach their children on the road and outside of a classroom. I am not the only one that has ever wanted to circle the globe by car, foot, train, bike, boat, and with very few plane rides.

Come to think of it I should only need two, unless I can find a friend with a big boat. Now that would be an adventure!

I found this blog – Almost Fearless – and the author wrote this e-book about how to get started. I read it. I am still working through some of the questions it raised, but this is a work in progress.

First things first – set a date. I set one before I ever read the book. June 1, 2014…or January 1, 2014…really depends on how the universe (or God or whatever you want to call it)works. I prefer God. He is in charge of this.

Second – what is holding you back?

In a word…PLENTY!

Not the idea, but self doubt. Self-doubt has held many adventurers back for millenniums. We want to go out an conquer the world…but what we really mean is that we want to conquer our little corner of it never seeing what’s on the other side!

A film posted on the Irish Polyglot’s Blog about his 29 life lessons learned from being a constant traveler caught my eye.

 

This is reality for so many of us. We do everything “right” only to find that at the end all we have ever done is the journey around our own little corner of the world.

You never had your “big break” because maybe your “big break” was meant to happen in Spain or Mauritania or Australia.

I have for the most part burst my own bubble on writing my way through the planet because many people think this way. Plus – I am lazy…who wants to do that kind of research! I am not going to make a list of bus routes and car parks and can you climb a hill to see the sea.

However – there are alternatives.

I found WWOOF. It stands for “Willing Workers On Organic Farms” this fits quite nicely within the parameters of Globe School. Teaching the boys about plants and cultivation without the use of pesticides and chemicals. It gives you a prearranged schedule to work in trade for a bed and your meals. It is an interesting idea that I may try out locally before the end of the year. I am sure SOMEONE in Texas does this.

I have also started a Couchsurfing account. Not that I have plans of surfing couches, but I know there are families and single mothers out there who are travelers. I offer them use of my couch in exchange for their information.

How do they make it work?

Since I have had my account for a total of 30 hours, I haven’t learned that much from the site. I have explained some things to do in and around Houston. I am a great tour guide for Texas, especially Houston on the cheap, but we must progress beyond our door.

Remember what Bilbo used to say: ‘It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.’ – J.R.R. Tolkien

I am sort of hoping to get swept off to some place truly spectacular, doing something truly spectacular. However, I know that I don’t want my expectations to meet disappointment, so I will just say that I hope my adventure is good. Good can be dull or it can be interesting, but either way it is good.

Sunset in Wyoming - Definitely on my list to see.

Sunset in Wyoming – Definitely on my list to see.

If you would like to learn more about the places we will go follow my board on Pinterest – Globe School.

Do you have any helpful websites that I can browse? If so, link in the comments!

Why start Globe School?

Tuesday morning (July 22, 2013) I was sitting at lunch surrounded by professional Houstonians eating a baked potato; when my boss started telling the vendor who had taken us to lunch about a book.

“Who moved my Cheese?” 

I think this book is written in an effort to get you to work harder, smarter, and become a better employee. My boss and all of our managers read it as part of leadership training to make them better leaders. Upper management is trying to make everyone realize that they need to continue to work hard to stay at the top. They need to adapt and become a force in their department.

Be the most knowledgeable! Be the most adaptable! Be the go to guy!

“Anticipate change!” “Enjoy change!” “Monitor change!”

After lunch, my interest in the story impelled my boss to forward me the link to the YouTube video that the leadership training team had shown to them.

For everyone that understands the point and propaganda I applaud you. This video had the opposite effect on me. For me all I saw was the invisible maze, the rat race. I am not a rat, nor do I want to be in a race striving for an end that someone other than me predetermines my needs.

“When you change what you believe you change what you do…”

This got me thinking about what I believe.

1)      I believe the world is a more compassionate place than we give her credit for, and that given the opportunity she would show me.

2)      That there is more to life than going to work to pay the bill and leaving my sons with a babysitter.

3)      My children need me in their life every day. Yes I like time away from everyone, just me and my thoughts, but in the entire world I would rather be with these two little guys than anyone.

4)      What happened to traveling the world? What happened to the adventurer who would see it all before she was old?

5)      I am creative. I am a writer. I am a gypsy-soul trapped in the race. I am in desperate need to see the world before I get any older.

The question that came down like a hammer striking me on the head was, “What would you do if you weren’t afraid?”

What would I do?

What could I do?

What should I do?

At first I thought, I would quit my job and open a bakery. Make cookies and cakes, and get fat and sell my wares. Become a member of the community and live out my days in quiet contented illusion. Calm the gypsy within by taking annual trips. Just living the “American Dream,” but that is such a dream. I don’t want a house. I don’t want to be tied to things that become an anchor. I like my freedom too much. I won’t see nearly enough of the world – if I see any!

That was like writing my obituary long before I am ever dead!

“Here lies Megan. She was good.”

In reality, my dream has always been the same. Become a permanent traveler, by car and by foot. Sell everything and live go out in search of the world.

I remember reading about a family who became travelers. One day they just decided that the material existence of their lives had become their only existence. It didn’t matter that they had a baby who was too young to walk. It didn’t matter that they had a mortgage and car payments.

They just decided to be different.

I want to do that.

I have said “I” a lot in this, but really it is a “we” experience. I have two sons. I am determined to show them the world and give them an education unlike any other. I think they should visit battlegrounds and castles and natural landscapes to learn about history, geography, culture, languages, and so, so much more. I think they should experience with all five senses and develop a sense of being a citizen of not just America, but of the world.

I have thought about the effects of this lifestyle and I can’t find any that would be detrimental. I know our families would visit us where ever we are or we could fly home for breaks in our adventure. Technology makes it possible for me to keep in touch easily and cheaply. A global network of friends and relatives will make it easier to sleep in a warm bed.

One thought keeps ringing through my head.

Where would I make money?

I would like to share our adventures. I would like to be paid to write articles, short stories, and books detailing our trek around the globe. I am a decent photographer, I have two of the most handsome models ever, and I know that people would want to read the tale.

So we move on to phase two of the planning of Globe School. Finding kindred souls to assist in embarking on this great adventure.