AMBIENT THOUGHT – EPISODE One Hundred Thirty: Where’s Your Head At?

The following and all of the other episodes to come are snapshots of what goes on in my head, now and in the past. There are times none of this will make sense. There will be times when I might get lucky and the blog I post will be well constructed and will flow like a mountain stream to an awaiting lake below. Other times it will seem like the ramblings of a madman and you’ll ask yourself, “What the……?”
You should probably get used to the latter.

EPISODE ONE HUNDRED THIRTY:  Where’s Your Head At?

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When I was lucky enough to have friends from the neighborhood come over to play in my yard, we tended to play kickball or soccer. I lived on a corner lot and it was a little longer than most yards. Of course, at one end of it was across the street and we had to be careful that we didn’t kick the ball too hard in that direction or it might get run over by a passing vehicle (which it did from time to time).

One time, we were playing soccer and I had the ball. I was running down to that end of the yard and dribbling the ball back and forth between my feet. I was heading for the ‘goal’. The goal was the space between the maple tree that grew there and the fence to another section of our property. I was going to just run the ball through instead of kicking it because I was thinking about that cross street.
I should have also been thinking about a limb from that tree that just happened to be forehead level. I was a so-so soccer player. I had a pretty accurate kick but my dribbling was crap. So I was concentrating on dribbling with my feet by looking down at the ball and the guy coming up on my right when I should have been looking where I was going.

I looked up to see where the tree was at the last second and BAM, it was much closer than I thought and I ran right into that limb. I knew it was exactly forehead high after I ran into it. I landed on my back and I saw stars against the green leaves of the tree above me. A few people ran over to see what happened. I just laid there for a few minutes. A headache started to take shape and after I stood up, I didn’t feel like playing anymore. Which was fine because most of the kids had already left the yard, riding down the street on their bikes, looking for something else to do. The ones that stayed behind saw I wasn’t wanting to play anymore and left as well.
The bad news was I had a headache for the rest of the evening and into the night.
Good news is I got the goal. So…yay?

When we look down all of the time, we have a hard time figuring out where we are going. I still look down at my feet when I walk and even when I walk to people. Call it humility or shyness. I’m hoping people will think I’m in deep concentration. It tends to look like I’m being submissive. I have had some think that they could try and be above me in status. Here’s somebody that they can rule over. Then they figure out I’m quite the opposite, a sleeping tiger situation. I realize what they are trying and they will be on my ‘list’ until I see them act differently.
And honestly, it’s really my fault. I’ll explain in a minute.

Then there are those that look up all of the time. They feel above everyone they see, all of the time. Their noses are high up in the air. Maybe it’s the job they have or the money in their pocket. Their status makes them feel superior.
But the problem with that is they never see where their feet are taking them. And they lack the humility that you need to become a well-adjusted person. They probably don’t know what it’s like to get blisters doing your job or having to say yes sir or no sir. Maybe they don’t know what it’s like to be at the bottom of the ladder.

Of course, the correct answer, the place where you should always be looking is straight ahead, at least most of the time. With me and my poor soccer ball juggling skills, if I had practiced more and juggling and not having to look at my feet, I wouldn’t have hit that limb with my forehead. I would have easily have missed it. And maybe I could have noticed that there wasn’t a car coming in the first place and kicked it through the goal before I even got near the tree.
And here’s why the sleeping tiger situation is my fault. If you look into a person’s eyes instead of down at your feet or the ceiling, they will see what kind of person that they are talking to. I have learned to do this. I have taught myself to keep constant eye contact. I’ve noticed that when I do this, it keeps the other person from thinking they are above you but you’re still a person that will listen.

We are all going to look down too much or look up too much from time to time. We are not perfect. If if you find yourself doing too much of one, you need to change your ways and your looking habits. Watching where you are going when the footing is unpredictable can be very important. It will keep you from tripping or falling into a deep hole. And looking up will give up a chance to see the sky, cloudy or blue, or the night sky, cloudy or full of stars. You never want to miss a chance to do either. It’s something that lets us know we’re still alive.

I was lucky that day when I hit the tree limb. I didn’t do more than scrap my forehead and get a bad headache for a while. I also saw which friends liked me more than the others. And it gave me a memory of my mom kissing my forehead before she sprayed it with Bactine spray and put a band-aid on it. It gave me a sweet memory of my mom. And also a memory of my dad cutting off that limb so his ‘looking-down-too-much’ son wouldn’t do that again.

You should always live in the moment but looking forward will keep you from banging your noggin.
Most of the time.

-Loyd Elmore
October 26th, 2018

 

I’ve decided to keep a blog about how I’m dealing with depression. I’m going to consider this a form of therapy. It might not help anybody else but it might help me.

 

 

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