Friday was made to anticipate fantastic weekends like the one I just experienced.
Before I get started, I need to share a little story about Alyssa so that you can get the full impact of what I want to share about my weekend.
Alyssa is like Atom Ant. She’s barely 5’1″ and weighs so little that it looks like a gust of wind could blow her away, but Alyssa is as strong as Atom Ant. She only has to exercise for a week and all her muscles start to look well defined again. Her muscles are more than just for show because like I said, Alyssa is really strong.
Partly because of her height, weight and strength, Alyssa has always been very athletic. Like most athletes, Alyssa is also very competitive and often “wins” at whatever she sets her mind to do.
So…that brings me to the story of this weekend.
Now that Alyssa is twenty years old, we are starting to relate quite a bit differently because she is an adult and likes to do many of the same things I enjoy. This weekend we actually played some games of pool which is also known as pocket billiards.
Was Alyssa competitive?
Uh, yeah. Duh!
In one game, I was working on putting the eight ball in a pocket and Alyssa had a BUNCH of balls still left on the table. Every time it was my turn, the eight ball would not go in the hole! Alyssa started catching up. When she only had a couple balls left, Alyssa looked at me as if to say, “Are you letting me catch up?”
I said out loud, “No way.”
Alyssa just made a twisted face and I could tell she didn’t believe me one hundred percent, but I really wasn’t letting her catch up on purpose. My abilities just stunk. I did, however, win that game.
It had been a VERY long time since I played pool. It could have even been thirty years since I had picked up a pool stick, so I was not only a bit rusty with the game, but also a bit rusty with the rules of the game. So when I got down to just the eight ball, I hit it into the pocket and thought I had won.
I didn’t win.
I had forgotten that you have to call which hole you are going to sink the eight ball in! Because I didn’t say, “In the side pocket,” I lost.
Yeah, that stunk especially since I’m as competitive as Alyssa.
I won’t forget THAT rule again.
Anyway, we had a great time together. I watched Alyssa with so much motherly pride and thankfulness. Proud that she is my daughter, smart, kind, compassionate, fun and a million other wonderful things. Thankful that Alyssa is my daughter, loves me and is very much alive.
My life has been a lot like our pocket billiards game. I’ve had to take one ball (opportunity, trial, problem, experience) at a time and hit it into the pocket/hole in order to finish the game (succeed, accomplish and/or appreciate the goal and/or challenge). It won’t be long before I’m able to look at the PTSD eight ball on the table and say, “In The Side Pocket.” It will drop out of sight into the hole just the same as my remaining PTSD symptoms will go completely away. Then when someone asks me how did I finally get rid of PTSD, I will respond with…I said, “PTSD, get yourself in the side pocket because I haven’t got time for the pain anymore.”
Goodness! I could even have a theme song. Don’t you think this one might be appropriate?