Mobile Minutes: Anxiety, Attacks!


Afternoon naps can wait.
What was to be a quick recharge became a REM nightmare. I woke up out of a nap…a nap…in an anxiety attack.

It was terrifying. Sweating, pulse racing, fighting nausea, and trying to figure out where I was. After a few frightening seconds I came to my senses and reflected back on the nightmare I got locked into.

I was back home. Living on scraps behind the local Subway. I had lost everything, even a motivation to live. All I cared about was life once upon a time, my undying joy of fried foods, and the reality in the middle of winter that I had nowhere to live.

That’s the dumbest, most trivial thing that I could be scared of. However, heading into the school year…I’m having fun. I’m challenged, I’m laughing, and my wife is happy because of it.

That’s a life I’m terrified to lose.

I will not go back into that darkness.
I will not.
Ever.

-D-

XXXI: Running Out


Another step.
Another minute.
Another goal.
Another mile.
Another dream.

I’ve been considering giving up the ambition of running. I haven’t hit a wall, I haven’t been dealt too many injuries, and I’m not really on the verge of burning out.

I’m just tired of being my own fuel. Continue reading

XXXI: Butterflies


It is a two prong thought, both stemming from the realities of the day.

For the past two days, while Darco has been out of the country, I’ve been attending a series of classes for educators within our district. Some of the classes have been great, some of them…not so much. It was during my first class this morning, I was sitting across from my mentor teacher assigned to me from our school, and I confessed that I was nervous about the beginning of the school year. I felt that I wasn’t prepared, I wasn’t sure what I was doing, and it was kind of settling into a panicked state within my heart and soul. I’m still embarrassed tonight typing out that thought. Continue reading

Mobile Minutes: Poser


Dear Diary…

It’s been two days since I did any sort of running. Last week, in preparation for the race on Saturday, I took it easy. On Saturday I gave it my best, but was sadly lacking. Today, I’m struggling for the motivation. I’m tired and have a bedtime quickly approaching. I’m tempted to head to the gym, but I’m just not feeling “up to snuff” for the track.

Perhaps I’m just becoming lazy, or I’m just disappointed in where I’m at with my goals. I need to have my mile at 5:00.00 by June 1, 2015 and the fastest I’ve moved is 5:57 in the month of April.

I should be faster. I should be lighter with a stronger core. Mentally, I feel so week. I know what I’m supposed to be doing, but I keep falling short. Drink more water, eat less garbage, get appropriate rest. I received 5.5 hours of sleep last night, I can feel it in my body. Do I rest, or is that an excuse to get out of work? What’s an excuse versus a warning?

I’m sure I’m thinking too hard on the simple thought. I met a teacher today that ran in college, and even after starting a family, still has 6:50 splits on half marathons. It’s humbling and humiliating to recognize that some inherent the ability, but others…we’re on the outside looking in. It causes motivation, at times of question, difficult to come up with.

It’s worship. Do I need an excuse for worship? Does God care if my offering is first or last, on the track or in the gym? No, He simply wants to hear from me, so why do I fear the protocol of success?

My success only comes through Him, whatever that may look like. I know my heart’s desire, but the work and grace required to find that desire is so frequently burried below guilt, fear, and embarrassment.

Thankfully enough of these written thoughts is enough to allow mmee to move.

-D-

XXXI: Childish Dialogue


If I (2015) went back in time, and I found my former self (circa 2001); I’m relatively sure this would be the transcript of the dialogue between the two of us:

2015: Life is going to be interesting for you, that’s the best that I can say for certain. It’s not going to be easy, in fact this moment in life is about the easiest you’re going to have it.

2001: Why does everything change?

2015: Because of the choices that we make. Let me break it down for you. You’re going to be an awful athlete, and your work ethic through high school is going to be a joke. You’ll blow off all your classes and never apply yourself, except in the creative writing class you’ll take your senior year. You’ll go into an insane amount of debt by going into the wrong college, the same one that’ll reject you the first time you apply. You’ll struggle to find yourself in college, go through a mix of poor relationships, and end up making some horrible, life changing decisions right after college. That doesn’t even address how the work field is going to treat you.

2001: Work field? Like what kind of job I’ll have?

2015: Yes. Be prepared to spend over a decade with a company known as Subway. You’ll do everything in the store, and will be in two primary stores before getting moved into a corporate position.

2001: Corporate? That doesn’t sound so bad.

2015: It isn’t, until you try to cheat the system, get caught, and are asked to resign from your position.

2001: I do that? Ouch…

2015: You will create problems for teachers, headaches for school board members, and will be reprimanded by administration before you leave high school. You’ll attempt to have a college board member removed, and you’ll be fired for the athletic department…as a work study student. You’ll argue with theologians, and will even walk away from the very church you attend now. Your stubbornness will lead to pointless arguments, and eventually even a horrific divorce.

2001: I get divorced!?!?!

2015: Your relationship timeline is about as fragmented as the Richter Scale in California. You’ll officially date one person in high school, and unofficially date one person in high school. You’ll mutually depart with one, and you’ll walk away from another. In college you’ll chase after student-athletes, only to have your immaturity cost you, your first serious relationship. The second relationship in college will be reckless and free, but you’ll be cheated on and left because “you’re too nice, and deserve better”. The third relationship will nearly end you. It’ll involve someone who becomes a teacher, a family deeply rooted in the Southern Baptist community of the state, failed vows, and a marriage that dissolves after a year. You will lose everything, you will go hungry, and you will cry yourself to sleep at the ripe age of 24. Your parents will bail you out of the mess you’ve made, and you’ll live at home for a while.

2001: Does it ever get better from that point? Relationship-wise?

2015: You’ll forever have a horrible scar from the Church. You’ll witness a pastor condemn you for your action and approve your ex-wife’s wishes for the divorce. You will lose faith in the Church, but for as much hatred that you’ll build for the organization, you’ll also refuse to give into the temptation to give up on God. Why this happens, I’m still unsure to this day, but you won’t lose complete faith. You will meet a girl at Starbucks, one that’ll be built in the city north of here shortly, and in a very short amount of time you’ll help lead her to become a Christian, you’ll start dating upon your return from a trip in Guatemala, and you’ll get married nearly a year later. She’s from the city north of here, has very, very little to her name, and I caution you to be very careful with her…whether she realizes it, or not, she’s extremely fragile. Treat her with care because she will also quickly because your best friend, and you two will be inseparable. She will accept all of your awful flaws, and she’ll expect you to do the same. Do. The. Same.

2001: Was she an athlete?

2015: No, and neither are you. You’ll fail in every form of athletics, and you won’t stop growing until you’re a sophomore in college. You’ll gain the “Freshmen 15″, and you’ll lose it. Gain it, lose it. This cycle will go on about five times in your life. Your heart will be broken realizing that you will not be like your mother, or any of your relatives. You won’t succeed at basketball or football. In fact, you’ll be the waterboy the next three years in high school for football. You’ll painfully dislocate your shoulder playing basketball, and you’ll only be on varsity your senior year because…well…you’re a senior. You’ll hold the honorable title of being the only runner in school history not to letter on the track team. You’ll start doing sprints, but you’ll end high school running the 3200 meter. Good luck with that. You’ll get more serious in college in the gym, but that’s just because you’re bitter towards the people that laughed at you in high school and in college. You’ll want to “show them”, but the truth is…no one really cares about what you’re doing at that point in your life. You will start to dabble with running though…running for fun that is.

2001: Why would I ever consider that?

2015: Because you’ll always have stress issues, so much so that you’ll get sick from the stress. People around you will turn to smoking, drinking, tanning, and other vices to cope with their own stress. Out of fear for your health, and how a church-goer would view you, you decide to run as a stress relief. The interesting reality is that you’ll start to love it, especially after the divorce. In the early fall of 2011 you’ll run a mile, on the road, with a time that makes no sense to any human. Especially one like you, but it’ll be your motivation to push the envelope of what’s impossible.

2001: Will I be a tornado chaser?

2015: No. The math required to process to get into a school of meteorology will be enough that you won’t even try. You’ll settle for becoming a international missionary after high school, that’s what you’ll tell everyone and you’ll even enter the program to do so in college. You’ll last one week before you quit that major. You’ll try physical therapy and sports management, both of them you’ll leave just as quickly. Finally, your advisor will inquire upon your decision for your degree. You’ll choose politics, and then you’ll decide to get another degree in education.

2001: I become a teacher! No.

2015: Not immediately. You’ll cruise through 90 applications of hearing, “No”, and you’ll give up for a few years. You’ll substitute teach to make the monthly rent in some cases, but you’ll work at Subway (mentioned above), and also for an investment firm…where you’ll learn that car-buying is evil. You’ll even try to make your own business, a women’s soccer team.

2001: Women’s soccer? I’m an idiot. There’s no market for that around here.

2015: Eventually there will be, but after one season…you’ll fail. Financially the business will be a disaster, and you’ll walk away and hide in shame. It’ll add financial stress to you and your wife, and she’ll pray for you to get away from it. After that’s over, you’ll be fired from the investmet firm. This means you’ll take a huge paycut, and you’ll default on a student loan. Your credit score will be trashed along the way. You’ll walk away from soccer, and in all likelihood will never return. By way of desperation for income, you’ll head back into substitute teaching. This could come as a shock to you, but you’ll wind up falling in love with a middle school inside the city. You’ll be there off-and-on for two years, dealing with some students that have rough lives, and you’ll love them all. It’s strange to understand now, but there will be something about them that’ll make you never want to give up on them. In a very strange, God-kind-of-way, you’ll wind up being hired by that district to work in that middle school’s special education department. Again, though it sounds strange, you’ll come to love every moment that you have in that school. Your teaching license will expire, and you’ll dream of renewing it so that one day you’ll have your own classroom.

2001: Well, sounds like life isn’t the easiest after this point. I’m right thinking that, yes?

2015: Yes, you’ll also witness disasters, death, and some very hard personal times.

2001: So, what am I suppose to take from this? I thought people from the future brought good news about all the accomplishments you wind up finishing with, and how everything turns out in a perfect manner…

2015: Life here is anything but perfect. Between now and my time you’ll see gas prices rise to near $4.00 a gallon here, over $5.00 in California and elsewhere. The world is anything but perfect. You’re going into so naive though that you have no clue. I’ll make this clear, on several occasions you’ll lose everything and you’ll fail at everything. You will even steal food from a hotel to eat while traveling. Failure will be a teacher for you, and humility will be its aid. However, I will add this, you will overcome these hardships and you will watch God do things that no one will ever be able to comprehend and understand. Where you fail in this world, you will succeed in life beyond it.

2001: Last question…how do you remember so much of this?

2015: In 2011 you…I…started a website.

-D-

XXXI: Every Step I Take


Every step I take,
I take in you,
You make move Jesus
Every breath I breathe,
I breathe in you,

The simple lines reverberate back memories of mission trips, summer camps, and when life was overall easier. Less facial hair, less stress, and an overall appreciation for simplicity…without even knowing it at the time. Even last night at my parents house I found a 31 page paper that I had typed out of spite towards one of my professors. Reading over the text I was humored at how naive I was at the time (and also how my grammar could be relatable to my sixth grade students). Continue reading

XXXI: Between Chaos


*tap, tap, tap, tap…*

My feet keeping beat to an unknown theme. Collections of the weeks thoughts resonate throughout my being, as my physical state remains unmoved.

Place. Position. Theme. Existence.

A desire to understand purpose with each step. Yearning to establish cause and devotion.
Why am I here? Cycles moving through life, surrounding my being, but a path I’ve never touched.

Get out. Be free.

My soul silently pleads. Nerves throughout my mortal place awaken with fire, desperation ignites in my heart.

Take the chance. Make the move.

The only voices in my head command.

Rebel. Revolt. This is your innate being.

I’m caught between two worlds. Angels and demons, right and left, whisper their secrets about my life I don’t even know.

You’re designed to explore.
Your current life is beautiful.
Stay.
Go.
Stuck.
Free.

All the time a stoich presence tightens on my face. No one knows my internal being, no one knows that I’m constantly on the brink of revolution. The silent aura hides the balance of chaos and peace that streams through my blood.
To be unattached, a place where I no longer connect. I feel my strings getting tighter, strained when attached to this daily eternity.

*…tap, tap, tap, tap…*

The consistency overshadows the brewing plot, and hidden images hide the inner workings of a torn field…stuck in balance of warring realms.

-D-