Like Thoreau watching ripples on still water.
Like Emily distilling her days into verse.
Like Snyder walking along rivers without end.
Like Whitman bearing poems like children.
Like Homer, a life’s work in just two poems.
Like unknown, wide eyed, big hearted, listeners
who are hungry and witness to the real work.
My Ella drew this at age five. She won’t be an artist someday. She’s an artist now.
What I love to do isn’t something I will be someday. It’s living inside of me right now.
I was born with love and passion, talent and strengths. So were you. We don’t have to wait until some future unknown day for that truth to be actualized. We are living, breathing works of art. Now. Complete and rich, creative and capable. Beyond the restraints of Resistance in our mind. Beyond the fear that lies beneath.
Believe in yourself.
How do you believe in yourself if you don’t believe in yourself?
My experience has required many mistakes. I acknowledge mistakes as little pieces of feedback necessary to grow and learn. Most people are afraid of making mistakes. We were conditioned to be afraid of mistakes as kids.
The things I thought I’d most fear have come to pass. They aren’t comfortable, but as I keep accumulating mistakes, I’ve begun to embrace them. Each time a little bit of fear is let go.
So in order to believe in yourself, consider making more mistakes. It sounds counter intuitive. Yet doing so allows us to remove things that hold us back.
How do you make more mistakes?
Do things you love. Things like …
Pursue an ideal career
Start your own business
Stick to important habits
Get married, raise a family
Ask that attractive person to a date
Burn black holes in dark memories
Assert yourself in an area of life
Push past your comfort zone
Do any of the above, you will make mistakes. You will screw it up.
It’s completely fine to try and fail, to put yourself out there, not be perfect, to say hello to someone and have them not instantly love you, to do something and have people judge you. Do this long enough and you will come to realize how great you were all along.
Don’t become a wandering generality. Be a meaningful specific.
– Zig Ziglar
Every day – I want to write something that I’m willing to put in the world. So that a week from now, a month from now, a year from now, 10 years from now… I can look back at it and say, This documents my phases and stages. This captures the small moments of my life with thoughts and responses. Here is remarkable communication.
I want to do this because I need each day to find the edges of my wandering generality in order to locate my meaningful specific. My hope is that someday my children, grand children, great grandchildren find my meaningful specific posts. Maybe they will say, “Dang! Grandpa was right on here.” And they will print the post to keep it around for awhile.
This is how I want to use this blog. My practice is found here. This where the productive output goes.
I’ve stopped and started here at this blog several times. The problem I have with social media is, for me, it nit pics away at this work I deem important. Social media is optimized to make me use it again and again and again. It’s purpose is to extract from me mundane, nervous energy. Not productive output. Evident in all the times I check it one last time. Mindlessly scrolling. When I look at my social media posts, it’s not intentional of my best work.
On social media, I’m forever going to be a wandering generality, but at this blog, I move toward my meaningful specific.
I have always known I’d be doing the work of a parent. This is where I belong. I’m a good Dad. This is what I know before I hear it, and I believe that when you know something before you hear it, that is why you are in the world. Despite this knowing, parenthood isn’t what I thought it’d be. Not so far.
Here are my reflections:
Parenting is burning black holes in our dark memories. Parenting is an opportunity to relight the candle and find our shadows on the wall.
Parenting has led me to discover my biological father whom I met at 36. This deepened my understanding of fatherhood by offering me a different perspective of the Dad I’ve always had.
I didn’t think I’d be a single parent. Being a single parent makes me reflect about my winding road with Love. If I wasn’t a parent, I’m not sure my heart would have reconciled its feast of losses.
I never thought I’d be separated, and barely know my oldest son who lives in another state (although we’re making progress).
I didn’t think I’d be living paycheck to paycheck, or feel as if I’m a flat tire away from disaster. I have learned how to make it work. Not just with a tight budget, but in every instance.
Yet, these realities set in motion my resolve to make amends with it all. The buck stops with me. That means a lifetime effort to bring awareness of, and scrape off the sticky spots on the tread of my soul. Especially when it gets messy. Because parenting, if anything, is carrying the weight and never stopping. Each step is a journey. Going all the way is a promise.
Nothing brings me more joy than parenting. I have faith in myself as a parent to Ben, Ella, Lucan and Ada.
The developers straightened out Rivers
to make room for houses. Sometimes the
rivers flood these developments. But
it’s not really flooding. It’s remembering.
It’s returning to its rightful place because
water has perfect memory. It will forever
try to get back to where it belongs.
Love is that way too. Love gets lost.
Love reappears. Love remembers where it was,
where it came from, its trials and tributes.
Love remembers the rocks in the river,
the angle of sun’s light and route back home.
Just like water.
Ada’s mom was pregnant with her when we broke up. It was a painful time period. I was angry. Nothing was certain. Even the rights I had taken for granted as a father with her siblings, Ella and Lucan, were put into question.
I wasn’t at her birth. I will always feel hurt about that. It took almost two years before we gradually made it to 50/50 parenting time.
Every visit was precious in those early days. I summoned all of my “be present, be patient” mojo hoping to accelerate our bond.
At bottle time, I’d caress her forehead, sing her the “Daddy Loves You” song and pull her close into my warmth. That became our thing.
She’s almost three now. Our relationship has caught up. We’re on par with the other two.
Today, she brought me her empty bottle, “Num nums Daddy.” She watched me fill it then took my hand to lead us to the rocker.
I caressed her head and sang her the song, our familiar love ritual now.
I’m proud and grateful for how things turned out for us. We love each other.
I’m also grateful that her mom and I have grown to share our joy for the children together. It makes the difference for all of us.
Being literate of our social responsibility, of social media, news media, all media, politics, advertising, race, gender, first and second amendment rights, the history of our country – even the weather – requires an unprecedented level of intellectual maturity that I often see usurped with an audacious moral high ground that sprawls into every crevice of our living, that even the bedtime stories I tell my children are no longer politically or socially acceptable.
I want to live a good life and show by example how to live a good life to the people around me who I love and respect: my family, friends, colleagues. Hopefully readers, listeners, clients and customers too as I grow my blog/business.
This all revolves around my mission/theme, which is to help you do work that matters, make money from your value, and move toward love.
To be successful in this mission, I will grow my reach in the world.
Right now, I’m getting started. I’m grateful to have even a tiny tiny bit of reach. I think I’ve had a positive impact on a few of you (because you told me so). I know I matter to my daughter. ha ha. Seriously though, right now I’m asking myself, “How can I get this theme I believe in out into the world? How can I PUSH it ALL forward?” This is hungry work.
So today, I’m asking for your testimonial.
Have I ever helped you?
If so, how?
Whether it be focused on marketing, one of my training webinars, writing, making meaning, friendship, leadership, good-guyman-ship, bravery, vulnerability, etc, or maybe it was just something you read that I posted that struck you in a unique way, I’d like to know.
Have I contributed in some way?
If so, today I’d like to ask you to take a moment to share your thoughts. If you believe in me, it matters.
Here’s why it matters: I have a vision.
I have creativity.
I have a voice. My voice is my power.
Your good words help me with the PUSH.
That helps with trust, and trust helps life get better for everyone around us. The only testimonial that truly matters to me is my own. No wait… That’s not true. I care what you think.
Nonetheless, nobody else can take away my self worth, or argue with me on it. But sometimes it helps to have at least one more testimonial. The more the better.
If you’re willing to write (or even better, record a video) a testimonial for me, you may post it below in the comments, or send it to Eric@EricWalkerBlog.com.
Bonus points if you’re willing to include your profile picture.
Walking through the days
crossing paths with my people
telling tales about where we’ve been
what has happened
where we seek to go
and what it means to get there.
We carry heavy things
and we’re capable of rest
good talks, laughter
sharing what’s ripe
and leaving with the reminder
that dark nights are as important
as sunny days