One of the greatest things my parents ever did for me was give me a best friend 19 months after I was born. I called her “Baby Jazz” and over the years came up with a dozen other great nicknames, none of which she appreciated because she unfortunately isn’t much of a nickname person. Read the rest of this entry
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I am not a runner.
When I was in middle school my deepest anxiety was saved for the day we were required to run the mile in P.E. I was an active kid who spent a lot of time outside, on the trampoline, riding bikes. However, any organized sport or running caused a strange reaction I liken to hyperventilating.
You may laugh and have in mind that I’m exaggerating. Stop imagining 32yr old Shilo. Picture with me 12yr old Shilo with braces, perm, and a decently round face that caused my eyes to disappear when I smiled… oh wait. That may happen regardless of cheek size.
I was last in the mile. Maybe you’re rolling your eyes thinking, “I’m sure it wasn’t that bad” but let me tell you- my fear over failing would turn into a side ache by lap one. By lap two I was dreaming up excuses I could use. By lap three every cute guy in the class was lapping me and I was praying they didn’t notice it was my frizzy hair and neatly folded socks falling behind. By lap four the rest of the class was waiting… and waiting… and dear God, am I STILL doing this?! My run turned into a walk and I resigned myself to acting like I don’t care.
“Your time was 12 min and 45 sec.”
I shrugged. ”I had a side ache. My knees are bothering me. I’ve had this headache. I stayed behind with that slow kid so he wouldn’t feel bad. I ate too much for breakfast.”
Inwardly, “12:45? Sweet! My best time ever!”
The same year I discovered that I’m amazing at the high jump. Best girl in the class. Who knew?! The P.E. teacher said, “We’d love to have you join track.”
“I’m sorry… I feel hives coming on. I can’t breathe. Don’t you have to run in track?” No way. I had resigned myself to not being a runner.
Three months before my wedding my sister assumed the role of personal trainer and got me into the best shape of my life. Still- I made her promise no long distances. I got up to 2 miles of interval running but even in great shape dismissed the running option. ”I suck at running.” I refused to set goals in this area and when I hoped to break through a plateau, I certainly wouldn’t dare say it out loud.
I always told myself, “I’m comfortable not being a runner. So what? I do what I can do. What is safe to do… what I won’t fail to do. Two miles on the treadmill in the quiet of the morning. Done.”
I’ve been realizing running isn’t the only area of my life that this thinking of being safe and sticking to what I know has permeated. Apparently “good enough” sneaks in when anything more risks failure or uncomfortable vulnerability.
I am not a writer.
Since I could form letters I loved writing stories. They were in private notebooks because I knew they probably weren’t great. I threw them away when the notebook was full but it was therapeutic for me.
When I was ten years old I discovered the youngest published author was nine years old. I was crushed even though I had never told a soul my dream to be the youngest published author. I had convinced the “rational” part of myself that I wasn’t a writer but that rational part failed to convince a passionate (yet fearful) kid.
In 8th grade my best friend presented me with a journal. I filled it in a matter of months. I got another one. And another. In 19 years this “non-writer” managed to fill 42 journals.
(Excessive? Yeah… maybe a bit.)
As close as I can figure, next month will mark my 18th move in 30 years. Some are hard to count: I counted the move to college as one even though I “moved” every fall. I counted my move during my sophomore year of high school once, even though I did move in with a family and back home later.
People are always sympathetic with their own comments about how miserable moving is. I actually like it. Really like it. My mom used to joke, “Windows need washing. Time to move!” Obviously, it wasn’t far from the truth. I love going through closets, throwing away junk, rediscovering what I should be using. I love the strategy in packing a U-Haul, I love how my brothers can be bought with pizza even though they detest moving my piano. I love new houses….even if I’m downsizing. I like setting up each room and finding things to love in a new place. I love that for a couple days life is on hold and no one expects me to return phone calls or do regular life because…ahem…I’m moving. Read the rest of this entry
Yes, I thought it ridiculous a town should have such high standards for lawn maintenance. But I’ve conformed. I love these streets.
But please, don’t tell people about our little corner. I’m afraid if people knew they might come in droves… and I’ve actually become kind of partial to a small town.
I was silly to let a sinus infection and bronchitis get me down this month. In actuality, that was nothing in comparison to the stomach flu that knocked me flat for the past two days. Who gets the stomach flu the week of Thanksgiving?! It’s a mean trick, I tell you.
As I was making my afternoon coffee I realized that there are mud streaks all over my white kitchen cabinets. What in the world? I then vaguely remembered Hudson proudly telling me that he would get himself cleaned up before naps. Sure enough, he must have used his muddy hands and feet to climb to the counter and wash up. I am confused as to how the mud is on 5 cabinets but I’m sure there’s reason.
Guest Blogger: Sean Taylor aka. S
Now I know I am a decade early and for some people this kind of title could get me in serious trouble, however, my wife was quoted a few years ago as saying, “my thirties will be my best decade yet.” Therefore in anticipation of the coming ten-year, I hope to forecast a few highlights from the decade yet to come. So sit back and enjoy 5 predictions from the future:
1. Great Adventures of the Amazing Taylor 7. Here we are sitting around our kitchen table in our, cottage white, kitchen reminiscing on family vacations while looking at photos on our iPad 9.0. Darla is 15, Hudson 14, Everett 12, and two more kids 10 and 11 respectively. We remember the family trips to Montana, visiting Grandad at Longbeach, Aunt Megan’s wedding, the adoption of the additional Taylor kids, bike ride trips, that one year where I didn’t have a job for a long time, sunny days laying the yard telling funny stories, and all the trouble the kids got into playing with their cousins.
2. Bodies for Life. I picture Shilo coming in from our bonus room gym sweat glistening on her slightly tan skin and hearing her look into a mirror and say, “Dang this is the best I have ever looked.” Now let us leave the rest of the imagining of glistening sweat covered skin to me, and btw did I mention, in this future, I have the body of a mythical Greek-god.
3. A Well Balanced Check Book Now this would truly be a miracle from the Lord, but I can see Shilo sitting at her desk with furrowed brow, pen gritted between her teeth wondering how all the numbers could add up and there be extra just sitting there in the bank. I believe they call it “savings”. Bills paid, checkbook balanced, and all expenses accounted for. Yes, it will be glorious. (she smiles just reading this prediction)
4. A Present Husband Now this is where I have lacked in the first ten years, but here we sit, decaf coffee and angel food cake with strawberries between us. A vibrant conversation about life’s happenings, the books we read, the plans we make while we play some scrabble and I kick her butt for the twentieth consecutive year. We reminisce about the anniversary to come and all the evenings for the past decade spent just like this (minus the angel food cake every time, in reference to reason “2″).
5. A Healed Heart We know pain, my wife and I. My pain is mostly from life-circumstances, Shilo’s however is usually caused by others, myself included. This prediction stems from a hope much deeper than my ability to make it happen. But may the Repairer of the Breach restore her heart. My hope for Shilo is that trust will be restored, her heart would be filled, and her hope renewed. My hope for her is not a painless future but a present God. That he would always be near her and she would hear his voice in the stillness, comforted in the shadow of His wing. To see my wife function from the abundant love of God is something I have long taken for granted and now I am consumed with prayers for this to return to her fully.
So Happy Birthday Shilo Danielle may this be the first day of the best decade you have ever known. I am glad to be your partner, friend, love, in this endeavor and I love you deeply and choose you every day.
We left the house in a hurry: all 3 children were crying (okay, screaming bloody murder) and Megan was attempting to calm them since she was going to be baby-sitting for the evening. We hurried to the ceremony. 10 min. in, S. looked down and realized he was still wearing his slippers! Needless to say, I had out of control giggles for most of the ceremony.
Also incredibly proud of my sister who juggled her own work, 3 young children, and preparing travel to Ethiopia while Lance worked full-time and completed Fire Academy.
And apparently side pony-tails are a turn on. Who knew?
…and my personal favorite of my handsome husband…in his house slippers.
SUMAS FISHING DERBY
Kyle helped Darla catch her first fish and is now her hero. She loved the idea of fishing. She hated the way fish wiggle when they pop out of the water.
Hudson was beyond giddy. This is the moment where we said, “You got something! Reel it in!”
Hudson caught 3 fish and talked about little else for the rest of the weekend.
Everett felt quite left out so we had some fun play time (which I prefer over retrieving hooks from fish mouths anyway).
Hudson won a brand new fishing pole for second largest fish.
Our catch: Hudson caught 3 and Darla caught 2
BIKE RIDE EVENT
HUDSON’S 4th BIRTHDAY
After a trip to Portland we have a definite “no” on the job we thought was in the bag. The Luis Palau Association has wanted to hire S. and worked hard to find a way to make it work but the timing and money issues are not working out.