Weekly Reflection : 08/04/2018

This week, my son wanted to play with custom action figures of characters created by me and my friend Phil for the feature films I directed during college. He just knows them as “Dadda’s and his friend Phil” for now, but it’s still cool that he likes them.

So, yeah. Life. It’s August now. We’re nearer to the end of the year than the beginning of it. Summer will be finished in eight weeks, though it will feel like it has ended in four. This has been one of the fastest years of my life, but it has been full. And good, despite it’s many challenges.

Here’s one I faced this week.

1). The Week in Brief “Peter Pan is Dead, and I killed him.” I think I broke my friends’ heart this week. I had a rough task at work that put me at a deficit for the week early, and I was burdened by it. My therapist gave me some good context, telling me that work stress is one of the things I’ve worked hard to overcome; and when I feel like my management of it is stripped, it can be the straw that breaks my back if other things—finances, career uncertainty, strife in the home—are also strained. It’s interesting because I feel like my low’s are far less severe than they used to be, but the truth is that when the stuff on which I have a handle begins to feel broken, the already broken stuff takes on a new weight, and I still fall hard. Fortunately, I tend to bounce back to my balanced self more quickly than months ago. And these “valleys” are far less frequent than they were also.

Now, what does all of this have to do with Peter Pan? Well, in my low state, my buddy Dean attempted to cheer me, as he often does; and we were speaking about the carefree and optimistic person I once was. In a rather dismissive way, I told Dean that such an attitude was the naivety and irresponsibility of a fool. I told him that I used to want to be Peter Pan, but now Peter Pan is dead, and I killed him. Not a sunny thought, to be sure, and I think it hit him with hard truth of how much I have changed. My meaning when stating the above was that the young fool who wanted to just have good times, evade hardship, celebrate mediocrity, and use consumer escapism to escape meaningful pursuits is dead. That was the manifestation of Peter Pan in me. I think the sentiment is still a noble one, even if I said it more severely than necessary. Yes, it is true I want to retain my childlike wonder, to be able to get lost in games with my son, and have a certain energy and vibrance when enjoying life, but I also want to be responsible and realistic; I want to buy less and savor what I have more. I want to overcome struggle, not hide from it. I want to be a man, not a boy.

I find that sometimes the truest things we say come out with the harshest language because so often we gauge our words so as not to frighten, offend, or otherwise make others uncomfortable. I thought about this exchange with Dean, and it certainly was more harsh than I intended; but it was the truth, spoke with a raw certitude I rarely use. For that reason, I think it is worth being said here; and I stand by it, even now as I share it with you. I used to be Peter Pan and wanted to stay Peter Pan, but I don’t anymore. I want that part of me to die. I want to be man—a good man—and I am going to keep striving to be.

2). More Hope and Happenings

Remember how I mentioned doing the first half of the FUTURE AUTHORING program. Well, I blew it on getting done the second. Here’s hoping I will get it popping this week.

PLENTY of GOODIES are on eBay, and I have at least another 50 or so going live this Thursday. I’ve decided that since this is a business, and it has really become my owning toy store, that I need to invest in more marketing/social reach. I am going to take baby steps and commit to sharing new auctions on Twitter and The Gram once a week, but I may begin doing more in the months to come as I strive to end our consumer debt cycle.

3). Happy Landon!

My son is a good boy. He shares. He listens as much as any Toddler I’ve ever met. He is sweet and tender and loving. He’s worth every tantrum, time-out, and whatever other challenges he throws at us. I love him dearly. I love being his daddy.

4). Recommended Media

JOHN PIPER on having peace despite an anxious soul.

JORDAN B PETERSON on setting smart goals.

A Conversation on work with MIKE ROWE and BEN SHAPIRO

#onthedaily recap

This week, I was Grateful for COFFEE, good friends, birds chirping at dawn, push-ups, smell in the air during rain, and running!!!!!

This week, I was Focused on asking good questions, being honest and vulnerable, treating others well despite a lack of sleep, showing kindness to my wife, managing my anxiety, and on achieving small obtainable goals!!!!!

This week, I refused to Worry about receiving hard answers to good questions, responses to my vulnerability, how I am getting to make it through the day on so little sleep, functioning on little sleep, an extended work day due to others’ needs, small failures I can remedy tomorrow!!

COLLECTIBLE OF WEEK : SUPER POWERS DR. FATE : I am shocked that I have not had this as a collectible of the week until now. This is the first action figure I remember ever choosing for myself from a retail toy aisle (though it may have been Super Powers Wonder Woman, the Lord alone knows the truth of it). I had no idea who Dr. Fate was, and I still don’t really know. I believe I picked him due to his blue-and-yellow outfit which I liked, as I was quite taken with the color blue as a child. Also, his helmet makes him look like a knight. Come to think of it, I probably chose him because I thought he was a blue knight! His original yellow cape has long vanished, but the figure is still intact and has been so for over 30 years, which is really something considering how many thousands of toys have now passed through my hands. Will I ever use him for Inspirado while writing? I don’t know. Do I care to learn about the real Dr. Fate in DC Comics? Nope. This figure is just a pretty significant piece of my personal history, and he endures. Even when I look at him now, I think : “Courage. Right. Honor. Knight.”  Maybe I’ve still got some of that childhood wonder, after all!

About C.J.:
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