Posts Tagged With: Author T.L. Gray

Directions

Directions

Ever had a destination, a goal, an objective, or something that needed to get done or somewhere you needed to be in life?  I can tell you won’t arrive by accident, it won’t happen on its own power, and I still haven’t figured out how to teleport like Harry Potter, so more than likely neither have you. No, the only way we can get to a particular goal/destination is directions.  We need directions. We need a roadmap to the destination of our goals.

I like to think of myself somewhat a gypsy, but that’s only wishful thinking.  I’m strategic, analytical, observant, scientific, and rational.  My free spirit I leave to my painting, but even in that – it’s still organized, planned, and executed.  Okay, I take it back. I’m NOTHING like a gypsy.

I have goals. If this damned pandemic doesn’t kill me, there’s still a lot of things left that I want to do, and the only way I know how to get them done, the only way that I’ve achieved the goals and destinations before this – was to make a plan and then carefully map out the directions to achieve the end goal.

So, I think it’s time I start making those plans again.  My problem isn’t that I don’t have any dreams, any plans, any wants, or any destinations, but that I have too many and need to make a decision and narrow them down.

It’s time.

One of those goals – is get back to this blog.

Here we go – step one – I blogged today.

Next direction in my goal for blogging – blog tomorrow.

Until tomorrow,

~T.L. Gray

Categories: author T.L. Gray, Blog Post, blogging, Dream, Dreams, Fairy Tale, Faith, friends, Health & Fitness, Hope, Independence, Inspirational, Instructional, Life, love, memes, Philosophy, poem, Poetry, Quotes, Relationships, respect, T.L. Gray, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Happiness

11751012_10204963325943899_745326168_o

Happiness.  Is it real?  Does it really exist? What does it look like? What does it consist? What are the rules, parameters, stipulations?  How can something undefined, unsolidified exist?  How can something so distinctly relative and individually interpreted be definable in any common sense or in a general definition?

According to Webster’s Dictionary, happiness is the state of being happy; an experience that makes you happy.  But, what is happy? Again, Merriam-Webster declares that happy is an adjective that means feeling pleasure and enjoyment because of your life, situation, etc.; showing or causing feelings of pleasure and enjoyment; pleased or glad about a particular situation, event, etc.

Well, then everyone in the world has had such moments, even the most depraved, repressed, depressed, enslaved person has at one time or another experienced such moments.  But, does that make them happy?

A writer friend of mine, Tom Piccirilli, well, more or less a writer acquaintance of mine, passed away a few days ago. I had the pleasure of interviewing him last year for West Georgia Living Magazine.  I think fondly on our interview, on his appreciative words about my article, on his gifts as a wonderful writer.  His wife posted about his passing today on his Facebook account.  My heart broke that he had finally lost his battle with cancer, but it wasn’t sadness I felt when reading his wife’s words, it was something deeper than that, something precious.  I was being shown what happiness was in the midst of grief. His wife spoke of the happy years they had together.  Sure they had plenty of bad times and bad moments, he battled cancer – it was tough, but they spent those times together, loving each other, supporting one another, and that is what made them happy.  Bad moments couldn’t destroy their overall happiness; they didn’t matter.

I remember loving James during the most stressful time of my life, and when he died and the darkness settled in on me, that’s when I knew I had been happy right in the middle of the struggles.  I have many, many happy moments with my kids: I remember playing outside in the rain with them, splashing in the mud, lying in bed telling them stories, slip-n-sliding in kitchen floor (it was my way of mopping), smack-talking during a board or card game, having Guitar Hero competitions, letting them show me how to pop waves on the jet ski, playing the clean-up-race-game, dressing up in costumes for a mid-night book release party, and so on and so forth.  My kids loved me and I loved them… and I was really happy.

Things change.  People grow up, lives get disrupted, and some leave this world and leave us behind.  My world has changed so much in the last few years and I’ve shed quite a few tears because of it, but you know what… I’m still happy, I still know happiness, it’s just in different things and comes in different ways. It’s never in what I think it should or would be. I’m kinda lost trying to figure out who I am and where I belong.  Happiness, for me, is now found in a random text, while killing aliens, in an occasional touch, in a sweet kiss, or in a simple embrace.  Some days I’m so sad I can’t breathe, but even in that I find happiness.

I can’t go back and grab happiness from anything in my past.  Those things don’t work for my present. I can’t sit and wait for happiness to happen, because it’s not something you can make happen, and tomorrow isn’t guaranteed.  It’s a present state of being, regardless of feelings, because of what is happening here and now.  I’m learning happiness comes from loving and being loved… and I love very much, and am loved very much.  Is it ideal, how I think I should be, or consists of what I should do, or wrapped in a way I think it should come?  Does it matter?  No.  I can’t fit my life into the shape, the mold, or the ideal of anything other than what it is.  It’s crazy.  It’s odd.  It’s different.  It’s unconventional.  It’s weird.  It clashes with every group of society and I’m really sick and tired of trying to make it fit somewhere.  I don’t fit in, and those strange creatures who don’t often understand why they love me, love me for all that I am.  They can’t seem to get rid of me, but they can’t define me either.  Doesn’t matter… as long as they love me, I’m happy.

Should I leave this world tomorrow… know that I lived today and I was happy.

Till next time,

~T.L. Gray

Categories: Musing, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Broken Receptors

Broken Receptors

 

Broken Receptors

I believe my receptors into humanity are broken because I don’t think I understand the world anymore. Perhaps I’ve spent too much time reading and writing in the fantasy world that I’ve lost touch with the real one.  Before my friends start jumping on the bandwagon and flooding my inbox with messages wanting to know what’s happened, I can say, “nothing’s happened”… seriously, nothing.  It’s just another of those existential moments, a culmination of several weeks, months, and even years of data being processed.

I look at the relationships in my life and see which ones have failed and which ones have lasted, which ones grow and which fade.  I believe I can pinpoint the transformations all stemming from either a strong or weak connection of the mind and soul, and on some levels even the body.  I have some friends whose words, inspirations, and actions touch my very soul.  They’re absolutely beautiful to me because of this link.  When I see their faces pop up on my phone it isn’t a pair of eyes, a set of dimples, or a crazy-ass smile I see – it’s wisdom, knowledge, awe, respect, admiration, integrity, compassion, excellence, truth, trust, and a deep honest love.  They’re beautiful to me.  I often call them beautiful, but I have no idea if they even understand what I’m saying.  I also have no idea what they see when my face pops up on their phones.  I very seriously doubt it’s anything similar.

I’ve always felt physically disconnected.  Always.  I rarely allow people to touch me, because that requires connection, it requires trust.  Don’t get me wrong. I don’t flip out if someone touches me, I just don’t initiate or put myself in a position to be touched if it can be avoided. Only a few times have I ever felt comfortable enough to where it seemed natural to touch.  Most of the time people interpret my reaction as disinterest or lack of attraction on my part – which would often be wrong. I make a point to verbally communicate that attraction.  But in contradiction to that reaction and protection, I crave connection.  I crave touch most of all. Yet, I’ve set up my life where I go weeks, even months, where I am not touched by another human being at all.  Almost on a daily basis my soul is enriched through the intellectual, psychological, and emotional connections I have with my friends (who are all far away from me and some have never touched me), yet there is no physical interaction.

As most of you know, I’ve tried to enter the dating world.  Can you imagine how that’s working out for someone who seeks those same types of connections I have with my friends and then add a physical connection (from someone who fears touch) to the mix?  Not very well. I think I’m actually going to pause for a while, because frankly I’m just exhausted.  I don’t understand the world.  I don’t understand what people want. I can’t fulfill those want anyway.

Everyone, and I mean everyone, says they’re not looking for perfection, but they’re all liars. We’re all looking for the fantasy we fell in love with in our minds and when the people in front of us don’t live up to that fantasy, instead of changing the fantasy we change the person.  Perhaps because I’m a writer and know how to change the plot, change the scenery, and even change the main characters – I meet people with an open-mind and an ability to rewrite my fantasy – creating one around the person in front of me.  But how can I expect them to be able to do the same? The sad part – I don’t.  I expect them to find the one flaw that will change everything, destroy the fantasy, sever the connection, and be the reason that gives them the excuse they need.  I will then watch them walk away.

People say one thing, but their actions say another.  I meet men who say they’re looking for that deep connection, for a woman that will stir their minds and imaginations as well as their bodies, but they dig no further than skin deep, going from pretty face to pretty face, beautiful body to beautiful body, waiting for lightning to strike, but dancing on a clear sunny day. They’ve got no idea why they haven’t found “the one” yet.  If you want lighting – you have to dance in the storm. You have to be willing to withstand the wind, the rain, and the thunder, but most of all days with no sunshine.  Who wants to deal with all that, really?  This is how I’m disconnected.  While I love the sunshine, I feel most alive in the storm.  I’m looking for that person who stirs my soul, irritates the hell out of me because they push my buttons and refuse to let me wallow in deception, self-denial, and reside in a comfort zone, making me a better person and come to a better understanding.  Yet those are often the very reasons why I’m never ‘the one’.  Who wants complicated?  Isn’t life complicated enough?

I’m about to celebrate my 43rd birthday.  At this moment I’m tracing a small scar on my chest where a needle of adrenaline was shoved into my heart when I was 22 to get it back started and regain a connection with life.  While I’m having the most amazing adventures, I’m doing them all alone because I can’t seem to make a connection, or perhaps just the right connection. I place my hand flat on my chest and feel the familiar thump and wonder why I’m still here.  For what purpose was I saved? I used to think there was a reason I survived, twice, really more than that if you count all the near-death experiences.  I once believed I would somehow make a difference in this world. I thought I was special.  I thought I was set apart for some great mission.

The truth is – I make no difference and I’m no different than anyone else. The world doesn’t need me and will continue to turn without me when I’m gone. I faced my mortality a long time ago.  I’m not talking about feeling or believing I’m worthless.  I’m very precious and valuable. I’m a mother.  I’m a contributing member of society.  I have self-esteem and believe in my abilities and talents.  I’m not depressed. I was once needed by my children and by family before that. I’m not needed by anyone now, and that’s not a bad thing.  I also don’t need anyone else. I love many people, my friends, my children – but I don’t need any of them.  I go day by day, week by week, month by month taking care of myself, living my life often with only a text here, an email there, a call every once in a while – a connection of the heart and soul – and I love them for it.  They have been my companions and showed me the beauty of the world. But, there’s no one to touch me, to hold me, to wrap their arms around me and tell me everything is going to be okay – there’s a lost connection – one I’ve never been able to make and seriously doubt I ever will.

Please don’t inundate me with emails or messages and tell me my time will come and that there’s someone out there for me I just haven’t met them yet.  I was also told … Mothers love their children.  Fathers love their daughters.  Brothers love their sisters.  Husbands love their wives.  Sometimes there are just broken receptors.

Till next time,

~T.L. Gray

 

Categories: Blog Post, Inspirational, Musing, Romantic, Spiritual, Writing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Twice Upon a Time – Review

Review first published in July/August edition of West Georgia Living Magazine, a bi-monthly print publication of the Times-Georgian. ©2012 Times-Georgian.

Image

 Author: Frank Allan Rogers
Publisher: Solstice Publishing
Expected Release Date: Summer 2012
Words/Genre: 94,000/Fantasy

Image

Bio: Frank Allan Rogers, the new F-word in Fiction, lives at Fairfield Plantation in Villa Rica, Georgia with his wife, Mary. 

His debut book, Upon a Crazy Horse, was published in 2009 and nominated for Georgia Author of the Year Award for Best First Novel.
 Frank is a current member of the Carrollton Creative Writer’s Club, Western Writers of America, and Southern Independent Bookstores Association. 
Please check out Frank’s website at www.frankallanrogers.com  for announcements and appearances. He can also be found on Facebook.
 

 

Twenty-first century, philanderin’, womanizin’ and playboy millionaire August Myles is shot and killed during a senseless robbery on what was to be his fifty-seventh birthday.  At first, eternity seems quite pleasant.  He feels no more fear, fatigue, stress, or the aches and pains of aging, and as far as he is concerned, he looks damned good walking around in his favorite jacket and walking shoes.  That is, until he meets Socrates … Yes, that Socrates!  …and finds, though he never murdered, raped or stole from anybody, he doesn’t qualify for a ticket through the pearly gates. 
 
Socrates tightened the chord on his toga.  “Satan is demanding your soul.  You’ll have to take up your case with him.  I can do nothing, August.”
“Yes you can!  Go back to your precious Divine Council and ask them to take another look at my record,” August demanded, then requested, and then fell on his knees and prayed for another chance, one more time around.  “I can get it right next time, I know I can.”
 
That’s exactly what Socrates does, and the Divine Council, in a desire for a grand experiment, grants August his second chance by giving him a mission, but one that comes with a little twist and just a few restrictions.  
 
·         The Twist – August is sent back to the year 1847 to the Wild West, thirty years younger, but he will be almost as a mortal– complete with all weaknesses and desires, but no supernatural abilities. 
·         The Mission – August must escort and protect eleven-year old orphan, Emily Lewis, in a wagon train along the Oregon Trail. 
·         The Restrictions– August isn’t just wagering his soul against damnation, but that of a thousand other souls.  He cannot fail his mission, and he cannot have intercourse with a mortal.  
 
Trouble starts immediately for August as he arrives in Independence, Missouri with nothing more than the clothes on his back and a hundred dollars’ worth of gold coins in his pocket.  His first purchase – after a tough battle of hagglin’ with a black livery owner named Forrest (whom everyone else just calls, Trees), is an Appaloosa stallion named Aristotle for seventy-two-fifty, nearly three-fourths of all the money he carried.   It was still weeks away before the wagon train left for Oregon, and according to the Wagon Master, Clark Bonner, August will need a few more things to be in the train: basic supplies from Leeds, a rifle and ammo, a wagon that can haul a couple thousand pounds and can take a beating for six months, a team to pull the wagon, and a sixty-five dollar fee. Oh, and most importantly, he is not allowed to bring the whore Candy Valentine. The problem is, August already promised to take Ms. Valentine on the train with him as an escort for young Emily.  
  
As if August doesn’t have enough on his plate as it is, trying to earn enough coin working for the local saddle maker, Sam “Hoppy” Hopkins, to get everything he needs, and convince Bonner to make an exception for Ms. Valentine, he finds himself chasing down a thief he stumbles upon in the middle of the night who tries to steal a load of Mr. Bonner’s ‘shovels’. Come morning, after delivering the thief to Marshall Edenfield’s deputy, Jonas, August finds himself behind bars, accused of the very crime he tried to stop a few hours before, and the deputy nowhere to be found.   Gettin’ out of jail and proving his innocence becomes tricky for August, and is not without its complications – and let’s not forget there’s a real thief out there somewhere.  
 
As the train is set to roll out of Independence, Missouri, August has gained a wagon and a team of mules, a waiver of the sixty-five dollar fee to Mr. Bonner’s train, as well as a reprieve for Ms. Valentine.  Yet, it came with a strong warning that he would be held accountable for Candy’s behavior, and she was not to cause trouble, or else they’d both be kicked off the train. 
 
After a few days on the trail, August feels like he’ll be able to meet all his mission requirements, even the one about chastity – though Ms. Valentine makes that a bit difficult for him with her constant flirting and combined assumptions of the other wagoner’s, that is until fate steps in and he meets the most beautiful woman he has ever seen, Mrs. Diana Desmond. 
 
This young, beautiful, strong-willed widow confuses and befuddles August to the point of frustration.  He doesn’t understand how she can have such strong compassion one minute, and then cold treatment of his eleven-year old ward, Emily, the next.  She confides to August that her marriage had been one of convenience, and not of love, and she’s not shy about sharing her troubled past or how she feels about a particular cowboy.   He draws her in one minute, in moments of weakness and overwhelming desire, and then pushes her away the next, when he remembers his restrictions.  On top of that, he has to deal with Candy and her constant advances and the insufferable, egotistical Ian Callahan and his romantic notions toward Diana.   In his jealousy of Callahan, August finds himself in a high-noon showdown, facing death, and ultimately the failure of his mission – all for a woman.  How does he fare in the gun fight?  You’ll have to read and find out. But I can say this is not a ‘forbidden fruit’ moment and the undoing of August Myles.
 
“I’ll see you in Oregon City,” August said.
Diana stared at the ground. “Why should I believe that?”
“Because I love you.  I risked my life in a gunfight because I love you.”
“Gunfights don’t prove you love me.  They prove you’re stupid.”
“Love can make a man do stupid things.”
“Like getting himself killed?”
“Like kissing a woman who calls him stupid.”
“Then shut up and kiss me, stupid.”
…In that occasion of ultimate human intimacy, of life’s greatest pleasure that could have been created by none other than God – when time is suspended, when vision goes cloudy, when hearing is subdued, when all senses and desires surrender to passion in a perfect world and focus only on fleeting moments of pure ecstasy – August Myles and Diana Desmond …
 
Does August fulfill all parts of his mission?  Does he break his restrictions? Does he give in to his natural desires and temptations? Or does he have the strength to resist?
 
It seems every decision made by August bears an eternal consequence.    They cost him a best friend, his wagon to burn, and got the Devil scrambling to prepare a case against him at his trial with the Divine Council.
Before August is whisked away to face the battle for his soul, he finds a friend in an enemy, and trades his greatest treasure for a safe return.  
 
Does August Myles escape condemnation?
Is Socrates able to pull out a miracle?
What becomes of the women (Diana & Emily) August loves?
What happens to Candy Valentine?
 
I’d love to be able to tell you how this story ends, but you’ll just have to read it for yourself.  Frank Allan Rogers does an amazing job answering all those questions, and reading his words would be better than mine.  Rogers’ skill with novel writing is superb.  He grabs attention in the first paragraph and doesn’t let go until the last word.  I was ‘literally’ pulled from my twenty-first century existence into a nineteenth-century adventure.  I fell in love with the wagon train lifestyle, as well as the cowboy, August Myles.  I know you will too.
Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Don’t Forget the Audience

 

This past holiday weekend, I decided to put ‘work’ aside and really looked forward into delving into a new adventure.  In the space of a few hours, one late afternoon, I went through three books before I finally found one even remotely interesting.  
 
I became frustrated after pushing myself through the first five chapters of the first novel, hoping and praying that the story will finally hit its stride, but it didn’t.  The pacing was slow, the events were unbelievable and the emotion was completely disconnected.  I so much wanted to love this story, because I loved the book blurb, the story idea and it had received lots of great reviews.  But, I refuse to read for reading sake.  There are too many great stories out there for me to waste my time on dull and dreary. That was $4.99 wasted.
The second story started off promising, but by the third chapter it began to jump from POV to POV without any indication.  I became lost as to who was talking, who was thinking and whose emotions were being described.  Sure that I had checked to make certain the book was not self-published; I was quite surprised to find that it was indeed.  I have given at least a dozen and one chances for the self-published industry to put out some great novels, to be let down a dozen times.  So, I found myself wasting another $2.99 on a literary mess.
 
The third novel, a self-published title -“The Fall of Billy Hitchings” by Kirkus McGowan, kept coming up in my Kindle library.  I don’t remember putting it in, or even where I heard of the book in the first place, but because it was self-published I kept pushing it away.  So, I spent the rest of my weekend watching movies with my family instead. But, this morning, and back to my regular routine, I needed something to read while on the treadmill (to keep my mind off the timer and the pain in my body), so I flipped on my Kindle and it opened to the last book I had been perusing.  I thought, “What the heck, at least try the first couple of chapters.”  So my dozen and one chances to find a great self-published title turned into a dozen and two.
 
The story started off with a bang, right in the middle of full blown action, and the dialogue flowed smoothly and is realistic in the modern-day time period, the style of writing was in my favorite  style (active/showing), and within a few sentences,  I was hooked.  I forget about the minute counter on the treadmill, and the aches in my arms and legs from having a laid-back extended weekend and now forcing them to perform at their top level, and got lost in the adventure.  Before I knew it, I the timer started beeping on the treadmill, and I was nearing the end of chapter four. I didn’t want to stop reading, but I knew I must.  I had a full plate of activities to complete (one including this blog) and would have to pick it up again the next morning.  
 
As I showered, I thought about how nice and refreshing it was to find a diamond in the rough amongst the bilge of self-publication.  I was literally at the point of fiercely advocating against ever reading another self-published title again.  I really, really hope the rest of the book lives up to the first few chapters.  I don’t even know the premise of the story I’m reading, having no idea how I even came across the novel.  It also made me think about how important it is to remember the reader, the audience, when writing a novel.  
 
Though we, the authors, are the first audience, it is not to ourselves to whom we must appeal, but to our readers.  Society today isn’t the same it was 100, 50, 25, 15 or even 10 years ago.  We live in a fast-paced world that demands our attention, and that attention is divided amongst multiple things in a single day.  A book written 100 years ago, could afford to start off slow and let the characters and emotion build around a central theme, because the readers usually only had one book at a time, and had plenty of time to read through it.  Today, books are published so often, through so many different avenues, and the reader is so inundated, that the writing style has to change to reflect the changing reader – or it will lose them by being left behind.   It’s too easy to put the novel aside and choose something else, and have instant accessibility through eReaders.  So, the story of today MUST be written in a format and a style that grabs the attention, teases the emotion, and broadens the imagination if it’s intent on hooking a reader.
 
For authors who refuse to change their style in order to meet the demands of the modern, current, and highly-pressured reading audience of the 21st century will find themselves left behind. So, my writing advice for today is this:  Don’t get stubborn and stuck in a rut (a ditch without an end), be open to change, and don’t forget the audience. Without readers, why write?  
 
Till next time,
~T.L. Gray
Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Zip-Lining – Facing Fears

Zip-Lining – Facing Fears

Well, I did it!  I also have the tee-shirt to go along with my new accomplishment.  What did I do?  Well, I faced one of my greatest fears, pushed my muscles to their limit, and took to the tree tops this weekend.  My husband and I went zip-lining at the historic Banning Mills in Whitesburg, Georgia.  We conquered the Screaming Eagle with only limited outbursts of panic.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Our adventure started with a treacherous walk across a wood-slated cable bridge.  At first it seemed easy, until I got about ten steps onto that wobbly, springy bridge.  That’s ten steps past the point of no return.  It only took ten steps for my eyes to see what lay below my feet, and I’m not talking about small wooden slats.  I saw tree tops, people!  That’s a sight that’s supposed to be above me – not beneath me.  That was the point when my legs decided to turn to jelly and my fingers clinched into death grips.  However, with shaky legs and a determination of steel, I concentrated on what lay in front of me, not below me.  I did really well, until I got to the last ten steps, the point where the cabled bridge was well into its upward climb, just past the point of realization that I didn’t have the strength to pull myself forward any longer.   My legs shook, my hands sweated bullets, and my breathing came in small gasps.  However, my mind remained calm, cool and collected.  When my left leg refused to move from the slat behind me, I calmly (without screaming my head off) called to one of the cute, young instructors for aid.  “I can’t seem to move,” I said.  He smiled at me and with a modicum of speed, grabbed one of the many ropes attached to my body and gave me a gentle nudge forward.  With his help, I scaled the last ten steps and pulled myself onto the tree top platform, and securely transferred my two safety lines. That was the first of many huge sighs of relief.  I didn’t even bother to look at the other side of the platform, the side where I knew I was about to take my first plunge into zip line history.  Needless to say, NO ONE else had any trouble crossing the cable bridge, including my husband.  At least he was smart enough NOT to say anything about it while we were so high in the air and standing on the edge of a rail-less platform.

My first plunge was so exciting I forgot to scream.  I had my left hand securely on top of the ‘zip-doo hickey’, and my right hand clenched tightly around the ‘Oh Crap’ rope that connected my body to the line.  I stepped forward, leapt off the platform, pulled my knees up and went zipping wide open through the air. I didn’t bother to look down.  I kept my eyes on the platform in front of me and the instructor waving signals.  I was going great until he started waving his hands in front of him, shouting for me to ‘brake’, but instead of moving my hand from the “Oh Crap” line and cupping it around the cable behind me to slow my descent, I went blank.  I wasn’t about to let go of the “Oh Crap” line, so I extended my feet forward and smashed right into the instructor waiting for me on the platform.  He mentioned something about needing to obey the signals, but I only vaguely heard his comments.  Cognitive thinking hadn’t returned to me by this point.  However, it finally sunk into my brain by the time I was standing on the edge of the next platform, waiting to jump onto my next zip line, so I repeated to myself a reminder to ‘brake’.

The next jump went smoothly.  I was able to move my hand from the ‘Oh Crap’ line and cup it into a nice, slow brake.   By this time, my fear of falling abated and I felt secure in the zip lines that held me.  But feeling safe and sound on the treetop platforms was another story altogether.  Many times I found my feet on the very edge of the crowded dais.  I knew my safety cables were locked in and would keep me from crashing hundreds of feet to the ground, but there was no guarantee I couldn’t fall off the edge of the platform.  My mind, with its vastly gigantic imagination, kept playing scenarios of me falling, ropes snapping tight and my head crashing into a tree trunk, ending with me dangling upside down and no one able to pull me back up.  I even imagined one scene where a mechanical crane, or one of those long fire-engine ladders, had to be used to get me down.  So, I learned to get real intimate with my tree-top neighbors.  I’m just so glad I had used plenty of deodorant and had on a nice, fruity perfume.  I’m also very thankful my treetop neighbors were just as considerate. Everyone smelled nice.

The rest of the journey went off without a hitch.  I really, really enjoyed myself and walked around with an adrenaline high for a few hours afterwards. My husband seemed to have a great time, too, and I’m glad he was there to share this adventure with me.  It’s another item checked off my bucket list, but something I hope I get to do again really soon.  I love conquering my fears, and heights are at the top of that list. I know I’m still afraid, but I’m not afraid to face my fears, whether it is heights or failure.  I refuse to let either conquer me.

Till next time,

~T.L. Gray

Categories: Inspirational, Instructional, Spiritual, Writing | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment

Blog at WordPress.com.