Thursday, June 24, 2010

Shoot the Moon

Yesterday while I was at the gym, (I love for you to know that. It's better than saying, "Yesterday when I was at Dunkin Donuts" and then I get to hear all of your judgments from even as far away as my house. OK, a journalist might have just noticed "I buried my lead" so back to the very true--or mostly true-story of my gym life.) So, while on the arc trainer, another gym goer/acquaintance and I were chatting. In talking about our lives, inevitably it came out: "That's just the hand you were dealt, Marianne." Sometimes, and it's always so well-meaning, the capsule that I so often hear summing up my life is, "Well, having Taylor is the card you drew." I get it. I know what I mean when I talk like that and I know what other people mean. Life is not a card game, but yes, I am all about extended metaphors. This is the hand I was dealt---deal with it. Have you ever noticed that people only offer that line when something "bad" has happened? I don't think I've ever heard those pearls of wisdom around a topic like, "Oh, she's Miss Universe? Well, that's the hand she was dealt." It's like the penalty cards are thrown at us in a random way. And all of a sudden, life is a deck of card---house of cards maybe.  But who gets what cards?  Who's the dealer?  Do we have any say? Oh my goodness, this could get thick on us, couldn't it?

Actually, I do love metaphors and symbolism and figuring out how to see things  that are cloaked in irony and camouflage.  I fancy myself as a closet Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music. Right before she bursts into "Do(e) A Deer...." she has that inward thought and summons all of her ways of knowing......."Let me see if I can make this a little easier," as she makes that teaching leap  towards clarity. . You know, "How can I get this concept across to you?" and so she bursts into song. I've done it myself in my lifetime of teaching. Burst into song and leapt for that metaphor. (If you're still reading, then you've come to where I wanted to begin this blog in the first place. Thank you for still holding on to the rope with me. Back to the card game and hand we've each been dealt---and in particular, since it's my blog--the hand I've been dealt) [Since I'm all over the map here today, what would your blog be about? What hand have you been dealt?]
Actually, I am a a terrible card player ---losing all metaphors.  But I always did love a good game of Hearts. Of course, I cringed until I got rid of the queen, nor could  I ever keep up with who had played what out of their hands.  And there were those brilliant  Heart sessions when somebody would "shoot the moon."  Talk about strategy--or luck or both.  Or maybe the hand that had been dealt was perfect from the start.  But it was that going for broke---going all out, having a plan, risking it all----playing the hand that was dealt with finesse and a driving will  that brought the moon--the winner-take-all into focus.
  My experience in this life, with the hand I've been dealt, is that most people would honestly have to admit that I drew the Queen of Spades in giving birth to Taylor.  (Isn't there always that collective sigh of relief in us when you don't get left with those big-deal cards in our own lives?--Not my child, not my family, not my home and the list goes on of "Thank goodness it wasn't me.")  So, my job now is to have a plan,  use carefully what I already have, and plug away---go for broke, take risks, do all that I can to shoot the moon.
I have already been collecting hearts along the way.  Thank goodness that hearts can be shared because there is certainty that I will be able to come up with a full hand---of hearts---to go along with that tricky spade queen. The good and the "bad."
Because what I'm thinking is this: If we stack our decks with a whole slew of hearts, then we can offset just about anything.
So, give me all your heart (s).  Please.
I'm carrying the queen.
It's only a penalty card if we treat it like one.
Fair warning---since you can see my cards anyway:
I'm going to shoot the moon.
"The risk is high.....but the reward is great. "
That's what the rule book promises: great rewards.
I'm in.