The Days of My Youth

Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come and the years approach when you will say, “I find no pleasure in them”–  Ecclesiastes 12:1

Surely everyone who stops by here will know which wackadoodle is me. This was second grade for me. 1978. Why I am wearing a 1980 Olympic Games really fancy t-shirt is beyond me. I guess we were so excited about the 1980 games that we were printing cheap t-shirts two years in advance?

I was standing here with my three amigas. Debbie was wearing school spirit attire. We were the Kate Sullivan Crocodiles. Kelly was wearing an adorable dress. Lina was wearing a matching izod shorts outfit. And I am wearing blue jogging shorts and a premature olympics t-shirt. There is also a hint of some really bad tube socks. I shake my head at the whole scene, but the truth is that is exactly who I was. And whether it’s a blessing or a curse, it is still who I am today. I’m still the oddly dressed fluffy one running off with a Popsicle. Did I not see the mom with the camera?

Lately, I have found myself in a bit of an icky little rut. I can’t seem to find the comfy white t-shirt or Popsicle and get in touch with the kid who was always moving. So today I spent a couple of hours talking to myself about this very thing. Call me crazy if it makes you feel better, but I can’t get the girls to respond to me philosophically, so I make do.

I got to thinking about the verse that tells me to remember my Creator in the days of my youth before the difficult days come when I find no pleasure in them. That’s not to say my days have no pleasure. Don’t schedule an intervention or start a card campaign for me. I’m fine. But the older we get, the more life can sit down on us. And we are either prepared for this or we aren’t. If we have established a strong connection with the Creator, it is easier. I think my foundation is solid. So there’s a base to run home to.  So how to get from here to there is what I chatted about today…with myself. And in case you ever have days like this yourself, maybe some of this will have some value. If not, at least you got a glance at the girl they called “Popcorn Head.” My mother-in-law offered me $10 to post this picture. I’m going to go stand by my mailbox and wait for that. Just kidding. This list is in no particular order.

Some Ways to Get Your Popsicle Back On if you’ve lost it along the way:

  1. Surround yourself with good people. People who know you. People who will tell you the truth. People who love you even when you are a dork in a bad t-shirt or running off at all the wrong times. If you get what I mean…
  2. Spruce up. Put on shoes. Check the hair and make-up. I got ready for my day at 8:30 tonight. It was beyond idiotic, but I feel GREAT.
  3. Find some natural light. Go outside.
  4. Encourage someone. Is there a person you’ve been meaning to write or call or say something to? Do it. Immediately.
  5. Get moving. The longer you are flat out on the couch the likelier you are to be smashed by a passing child on an indoor scooter. Yeah, it does happen around here. Exercise. I can’t say enough about a regular routine here. When I am exercising, I am unstoppable. When I’m not, a hamster could stop me.
  6. Identify a bad habit. Replace it with something. You can’t just drop it. Dr. Phil says there’s no such thing as will power. Hey, Dr. Phil said it…If T.V. is your nemesis, find a good book or spend 30 minutes on a cool hobby.
  7. Identify your goals. If you don’t know where you are headed, you won’t accidentally end up there. Then, make sure your spare time activities move you toward the goals, not away from them.
  8. Pump up the jam. Either crank up some C and C Music Factory or sing something perky at the top of your lungs. You can’t sing Zippity Doo Dah and be down. Ya just can’t.
  9. Read the Bible. Every day.
  10. Clean something. Either clean a drawer or a closet or tidy up a main living area. Improve something. Then, if you break out with a nasty case of shingles overnight, you’ll be suffering in a peaceful space.
  11. This is a bonus and one that’s too obvious to really discuss. But it’s also the one I struggle with as much as anything else. Go to bed. Get 8 hours of sleep. Stop typing. Now.

Yeah, I know. I spend too much time alone.