Thursday, June 15, 2006

Nekkid in a Chicken Suit - part 2

Part 2

Think of all the things that don't "fit" in life. Is it your job? Is it your home? Is it your wardrobe? Your hair? Your friends? Your church? Your ministry?

For me, at least lately, it is a combination of things. It is not my work, but that I need to find a way to do this that is ME, and takes into account who I am, rather than trying to fit a mold made for someone else, by someone else. Being yourself is a key to being comfortable in the suit. Perhaps for you it is a chicken suit you are born to wear. For me, much as I love having fun, I feel ridiculously exposed trying to play this role in the way someone else would have me to play it.

Anyone who knows me knows that the whole made-up, power suit, perfectly selected gold button earrings, acrylic nails, high heeled pumps package is not me. I can do it when the occasion calls for it, but that occasion better be brief and suitably upscale, because I can't maintain that for long. The women who are up an hour and a half before they have to leave in the morning and spend an hour of that applying their makeup and skin care routine and fussing with their hair, well, they're great and nice to look at, but I am incapable of that kind of attention to appearance.

As far as I'm concerned, you should be clean, combed, clothes ironed, nails clean (possibly polished), and your shoes should have the scuffs polished out. Your best ornament is a smile. And for me, while I am leaning more and more away from the whole this-is-Colorado-so-I-should-wear-jeans-everyday attitude, I'm more of a Coldwater Creek dress-up, than designer suits, hose and 3-inch heels. That being said, I could probably use a little more polish, but how do I walk that fine line between polishing up and feeling uncomfortable and out of place--nekkid in the chicken suit.

Other parts of this don't fit. I am not naturally outgoing. I'm not shy, but I don't have a natural gift of conversing with strangers. I am working on that, because I believe that I can become more comfortable and do a better job getting to know people, but it will take time.

I am also still learning to accept the physical limitations that I have. Denial doesn't make it better, although that has been my coping strategy for a long time. Pretend it's not there and move ahead. I am determined that none of these physical problems will rob me of the ability to enjoy life. What I must accept is that if I want to do things like go on a whitewater rafting trip, I cannot lose sleep in the days preceeding it, nor can I do much physical labor in the days leading up to the event. I must also allow for extra time recovering afterward. Sometimes it isn't necessary, but most times it is. There's a trade-off. Another trade-off is that I cannot keep my house as clean as I would like it to be. It is a lot of work to keep a house sparkling, and if I keep it up (this is in theory, you understand, and not something that I have ever accomplished) I am drained of all energy to work or do anything fun. My philosophy is that you have to have fun! I don't mean fun before other things, but you must find ways to enjoy your life daily. You must celebrate life.

I also believe that you cannot let opportunities pass you by. Not the opportunity to do good, nor to smell the flowers, nor to hear the wind whisper in the treas, not to dance with your Uncle, or to climb a mountain, or to rappel down 130 foot cliff. Seize the opportunity to travel, to visit a friend in the hospital, to pick a bundle of fresh herbs for a friend, to dangle your feet in a mountain stream, to watch the parade, to be IN the parade. Laugh. Sing. Draw. Paint. Read. Do stand-up comedy, sing with the band, have your friends over for ice cream.

Maybe this is the key. These are some of my strengths--enjoying the moment, celebrating the day. These are the things that will draw people to me. I don't want to just be someone's realtor (unless they turn out to be a real jerk). I want to make friends. I want to help people and to be a part of their lives. What I can do is see the possibilities. The possibility of something better, something more. I can see a house or a property the way it could be without that ugly wallpaper, or with a fresh coat of paint, with those awful bushes cut down, or with fresh tile.
I can see the possibilities in people.

Not to make too swift a turn, but perhaps this is what I enjoy about the A&E show "Dog: The Bounty Hunter". This is a guy who is completely himself. He's rough around the edges, dresses in his own unique style, and chases the bad guys with a passion. Then he looks at these men and women with compassion and tells them they have hope and how to change their lives and backs it up with help and support. This is not wimpy compassion, false compassion that says "I love you, let me help you live free", and avoid justice, but compassion that says you can do this, you can make it through your court visits, serve your time and use it to become the person you should be--to your children, to your wife, to your mother. He sees the possibilities, and never seems to think anyone is too far gone for help and compassion. He relies on God for strength, courage, hope and help and turns others to the same source. I admire how this man lives his walk.


Beth said...

The realtor I liked best of any I ever met (before you became a realtor that is) is one who did NOT wear a suit. It wasn't jeans, either, but something inbetween. Sometimes a suit IS a chicken suit as far as clients are concerned - more comfortable clothes make some clients feel more at home and trust the realtor more. At least that's how it struck me. I also liked my last realtor because he had kids, was involved with their soccer league somehow, and does Colorado things like camping.

Those particular things aren't the formula, but I liked that he was a real person. I felt like I caught a glimpse of who he was at home, and it wouldn't be all that different than what I saw.

Have you considered adding your blog listing to your business card?

Kim said...

hmmm. Add the blog listing to my business card. Sounds like a way to scare people off. ;-)