Monthly Archives: October 2018

October 28, 2018

This week has been much more relaxing than recent ones, and yet a bit more interesting. I started a boxing one-on-one class at my gym, and my personal trainer had said “We can do less cardio, because the boxing will get you there.” At the time, of course, I had taken him at his word, but there’s nothing like experience to confirm what I imagined it would be like. The intensity my teacher approaches with is very interesting to respond to, and definitely pulls me closer to “no excuses.”

The day after that, I had booked a massage therapist on my trainer’s recommendation, and it was a rather surreal experience. Between the low lights, the calm music, and so many tensions both in my body and mind eased away, it felt as if I was in a dreamlike state. I had to “come back to reality” at the end of the hour. I look forward to the next session on Wednesday.

At work, I found out my Team Lead had quit, and naturally inquired about advancing to the position myself. Apparently he did so as the company is going into a merger, so they’ll be holding interviews for the position soon. I’ve taken the opportunity to pray that I get it, if it be God’s will. I know I interview well for a new position, but I’ve never had to interview to advance. I’ll be sure to look up how to interview for a higher position, but at the same time I know I have to manage my expectations. After all, the higher I place my hope, the farther it has to fall. I was already disappointed when I didn’t get it the first time, but considering my attitude and thinking at the time, I can say I may have not been ready for it.

Rather than bible study and church today, our class held a tailgate party as a way to reach out to our community. I believe I saw some new faces, and I got to know Jake and his wife much more today. She immediately recognized Kaleo when I played it for Jake, and they recommended an Italian Pianist that I’ll have to listen to and follow up with them on. Corey and his wife brought the newest addition to their family, a sweet blue-eyed girl. At the end of the day, Nicole and Todd gave me a ride home and we talked about the Men’s retreat which will be coming in February. I didn’t go at the beginning of the year because I had just barely landed in Charlotte and started work, so I knew it wasn’t time to start asking off.

Looking into next week, I know I have some goals better defined. I’m already striving for greatness, and there’s the potential for it to pay off. Remaining cool, calm, and collected will be essential. I must also recognize the opportunity for growth. I’m hopeful and prepared for what comes next.

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October 21, 2018

Compared to last week, this one has been nearly blissful. I felt very productive all week long. At my main job, we’re producing over the normal amount that I’ve been used to, and I got some equipment for an upcoming project. To quote The Simpsons, “Everything’s coming up Millhouse!”

The gym is paying off as well. I’ve lost eight pounds, and people are starting to notice. I thought I was a little less round when I saw myself in the mirror, and apparently I was correct. On top of that, I’ll be able to start a boxing class soon, so I’m tremendously excited. I was told it would take about three months to see the full transformation, but this is definitely fuel to see the new and improved me by January.

I was late for bible study today, but it was a brilliant concentration on effective communication, which has been something the YouTube videos I’ve been listening to lately have gone over. The biggest takeaway from it as a whole is that one must be actively listening, rather than just waiting for one’s turn to speak.

Today’s sermon was by and for the children, and Sherry made an interesting point how over the decades each generation loses something in societal and world advancement. At first, it seemed cynical, but I couldn’t deny the truth within it. Each of us got a card marking times we could volunteer, and I’m not sure if I could make any commitment of time but I’ll keep an open mind.

After service, I took the opportunity to help set up for the concert playing tonight. I was so glad I took the opportunity, because I met the gentleman who was baptized last week and told him how his story moved me. I really enjoyed working along my Christian brothers.

Looking forward to next week, I feel renewed. Things are definitely less of the same tired routine, and more about personal advancement. I just need to take continuous care to stay focused on the path.

October 14, 2018

This has been an terribly stressful week. We’ve had to keep my Brother’s two dogs, who are not well leash-trained, not well house-trained, and they bark at every sight and sound. Add to that the fact that my Mother just seems to raise her voice at every opportunity and I am completely out of patience. I crave to be living independently of her, but until my car is paid off, it would be unwise to jump into the responsibility for more expenses. Even so, the way she ignores my wishes, I’m not sure the tradeoff is worth it.

I’m really enjoying the visits with my personal trainer, and it does serve as an outlet to alleviate the stress, but I only go to the gym twice a week. I may be able to add Saturday classes soon, and I’m very hopeful to, assuming I can afford it. The investment I’m making in myself is well worth it and important to me. He and I went over my food log, and apparently I’m doing very well. I just need to cut juice and tea, so to that end I bought a juicer. I’m still trying to understand how to disassemble it without breaking it before first use, but I’m sure it’ll help. Particularly if I buy the books that guide nutrition.

Work has been going as well as ever, although I was slogging on Monday despite my best efforts. Even so, I’m taking more interest than I had after vacation. I just wish this hotel were as interesting as the previous one. Even so, the savings in fuel and time getting home are probably better than a few funny stories every week.

In bible study, we went over a myriad of ways that our small groups could begin. I’m excited to see what fruits it will bear, but altogether I wonder if I should change to first shift and take a hit in hours at my second job to open my time for more socialization. That, of course, would be in conflict with my professional goal of possibly advancing to team lead. I should pray for resolution.

In worship, we had three baptisms, and also took communion. Our baptisms were two youths and a gentleman who is my senior, and his story was deeply touching. I think what reached me the most today was when we sang Because He Lives, as the chorus helped me to regain my confidence under these burdens. It is “Because He lives, I can face tomorrow. Because He lives, all fear is gone. Because I know he holds the future, and life is worth the living, just because he lives.”

The dogs will be going home tomorrow, so I’ll be breathing a sigh of relief. I think I’ve found a bible study on the app to begin that I can invite Dan and possibly Madison to. Also, the church is hosting a tailgate party as part of community outreach, so I’ll be inviting my trainer and the owner of the gym. As awful as this week has been, I look forward to what the next holds

October 7, 2018

It’s certainly been difficult this week going back to work after being in paradise. I think my enthusiasm is slowly starting to return, but post-vacation funk definitely had a grip on me. Pair that with the disappointing news that my main job isn’t adding a third shift, and therefore I won’t be going team lead on it, and it’s hard not to wonder if there are greener pastures elsewhere. However, my current team lead is looking into bigger and better things, so it may not be that long after all until I can move forward, and move out on my own.

Speaking of, conflict at home came back very quickly. I told my buddies “you wouldn’t think we were just on vacation last week.” I floated the idea of family therapy, and my Mother was receptive to it, so perhaps we can move past our issues. I certainly hope so.

We had our last Circle Up meeting before deciding how to handle our groups going forward, and I’m hopeful to establish a group to meet with regularly. As much as I look forward to seeing the people at Church every week, it would be nice to gather more frequently, and stay engaged in a faith atmosphere.

The only other thing I can think of is that my personal trainer said I hadn’t lost a step during vacation, which was good news. I enjoy the bench press and what I can only think to call the parachute pull the most. It’s an exercise created by Navy SEALS who, during their paratrooping missions, would use their parachute belts to pull themselves at an angle, among other exercises.

Looking forward to next week, I can only consider how aggressive I should be in pursuing team lead.  It’s a job that matches my capabilities, but I need more money if I’m going to make it on my own. I’m hungry for it, and I know I have to be patient at the same time. It’s never easy to reconcile those two feelings at such odds,  but I’ve done it before and can again.

September 30, 2018

This week has been spectacular. As I signed out Monday morning, I knew I would be getting up when I wanted to, seeing my trainer in the afternoon, and not going anywhere near work for seven days. I loved every part of my trip to Savannah, and wouldn’t hesitate to go back.

The night we arrived, we took the dogs to the beach and it was fantastic to hear the tide, smell the salty air, and walk on wet sand again. Not long after there was a venue where a blues band was playing, which was great considering I missed my blues show the week previous due to the hurricane. The day after, we went to the aquarium, and I got to feed a horseshoe crab. I had no idea their mouths were at the center of their legs. We also walked the nearby nature trail and saw an incredible 300-year old Oak tree. We also visited the beach again that evening, and this time I just had so much fun letting myself get pushed by the waves.  After that was my birthday, and we packed in both a visit to the American Prohibition Museum and the play The Diary of Anne Frank. It was a spectacular day of history seen through two lenses.

The next day, we finally got to the beach during the daytime, and I played in the water for awhile before getting stung by a jellyfish. After a quick visit to the grocery store to pick up some vinegar, I felt fine and reflected that it was all part of a well-rounded experience. We then went for a Dolphin Tour, which had some interesting information, and caught another music act before settling in for the last night there and a long drive home.

Reflecting on my journey in faith, I completed the Bible Study plan Dan invited me to, and I’m looking forward to inviting him to one soon. In Bible Study, only Kevin and I were able to attend for Circle Up, so I’ll have to remember my other group members in prayer. I was also late in arriving, but it must’ve been the will of my Father because a young gentleman asked me if I knew where the youth were meeting. I was able to figure it out and delivered him to the Youth Minister, and said it was very interesting to be called upon as a shepherd.

In worship, we were joined by another church, which was a great opportunity to have a new perspective as Dr. McGowan gave his message. At some points it was challenging, because it reintroduced something that I interpreted as possibly transnational win-lose thinking, which was one of the things I had to correct. Perhaps it does have its place and applying positive win- win thinking all the time could lead to disappointment if not measured against reality. I’ll have to analyze future events through those lenses. In either case, it goes hand-in-hand with last week’s message that we must not only not lose focus, but also continue to invite others to follow Christ in their lives. I may have become a bit shy about discussing faith in my everyday life over the past months, but with it brought more into focus I know I can correct it.

In conclusion, I’ll be returning to work tomorrow and I’m making a concentrated effort to enjoy that notion. I do look forward to asking about the potential to team lead a third shift next year, and I’ll enjoy discussing my trip with my own team lead. All in all, it was a greatly rejuvenating experience, and so must be the return to the day’s labor for a day’s wages.