Tags: dogs, nature, survival school, survival skills, world ending
In little communities across the country, we are more protected from the natural dangers of the world than we realize. The idea of survival of the fittest comes to my mind often as I think of getting ahead in my career and other typical stages one goes through in life. But when it comes to physical strength and endurance, I have never been truly tested. After my years as a brownie in the Girl Scouts and sitting around campfires in camp, my time in the great outdoors has been fairly limited (unless you count high school parties in the woods). I honestly can’t remember the last time I was in a tent.
I know I’m not alone in losing touch with nature in all its glory and danger. In this day and age, we are all so connected to everything except nature, it seems. And not that I am one to fall for the hype of the world ending at the end of this year, but you never know what can happen.
That’s why there are classes for people who are serious about getting back in touch with the outside world and protecting themselves from possible natural disasters. At the least, these classes can help one reconnect with their natural instincts and help build character.
When I watch my dog — a very domesticated animal — I see the survival instincts clear as day. You can domesticate an animal, but you can’t take the instinct out of an animal. He is going to chase squirrels, cats, birds, deer, possums. He’s going to track scents and listen to his environment. He is going to protect his family. I thank my dog for at the very least making me more aware of my surroundings. He has trained me to spot any possible dangers — be it a plastic bag moving in the street or a suspicious person, when I am with him, I am aware.
Awareness is probably the first step. But survival needs more than that. Survival takes heart, body, and soul. Survival takes strength. Survival takes knowledge and instinct. Survival takes action. Survival takes the desire to live and thrive.
Do you have what it takes?
Tags: being single, engaged, freedom, hanging out, independence, married friends, wingwoman
Ever since I got an engaged, I have seen a change in the way people interact with me. It’s almost as if I’m playing some sport and I just got traded to the other team — the “serious couples” team, the “married” team. Typically, I try to be very sensitive to the “other” side — the single side, because I know a lot of people are not there by choice, and societal pressures to “settle down” can be overwhelming.
But today I need to stick my neck out for all the engaged folk who are not “settling” or “settling down.” Just because I’m getting married doesn’t mean I don’t want to go out and have fun. I may be wearing a ring, but don’t brand me as boring. I still want to drink, dance, sing, party. I still want to be your wingwoman and help you get your game on. I can still listen to your dating stories and talk about hot guys.
I may have found my partner, but I’m not ready to settle into a life of dinner parties with other married couples. I’m not about to buy a house and start a family — not yet. It may seem that I have my shit together, and in some respects I do more so than others, but I still have things that I want to do, and that includes hanging out with you.
I still want to do girls nights out. I still want to be considered one of the guys. I don’t want to sit around talking about wedding planning. I want to shoot the shit, talk about the crazy things we do and did, what’s on tv and in the movies, what’s going on in the world. I want to tease you and let you break my balls. I want to be there for you when things are good and things are bad.
I want to be your friend — not your “married” friend who doesn’t go out anymore. I don’t want my pending nuptials to wedge a block between us. Sometimes, we are going to be going through different things at different times. We might be on different pages but what made us friends still remains.
So don’t treat me like your married friend, and I won’t treat you like my single friend. Relationship status is not a disease. You are you and I am me.
Tags: love, romance, titanic
I was just 14 years old when Titanic came out. It was at this age that my crushes started turning into what I called “relationships.” I went out with a few boys for 1 week, 2 weeks, 3 weeks, and it would end. Somehow the “relationships” would end and I’d be chasing the next guy.
And somewhere in that time Titanic came out. Somewhere during that time I longed for the love that I saw in the movies. I remember saying once to a friend and her man of the minute, in my teenage angst, “I can’t be around ‘happy couples,’” – my longing for a “love” of my own clouding my mind.
In seeing Titanic again, I am reminded of a portrayal of love that truly affected my innocent mind. Love was this passionate thing that happened so quickly, a chemistry that perhaps was scary or forbidden, a desperation to never be apart. I’d listen to cheesy love songs (ok, still do sometimes) while talking to “love interests” on the phone — and think that love was this undying thing and that the strong feelings of desire last forever. In retrospect, it would probably be exhausting and quite distracting to have those kind of emotions at the forefront all the time!
What it sounds like to me, now 15 years later, is the feeling you get at the start of a relationship, the “honeymoon phase,” or during a summer fling. All you want to do is stare at the stars, look deep into each others’ eyes and hold each other. It’s the feeling you get when you are just getting to know a person, and he/she seems so perfect and there is hope that this feeling could last forever. It’s before you start falling into the routine of each other’s lives, before you begin the steps of becoming an item and becoming partners. It’s before you know each other’s habits and secrets. It’s the phase where your interest isn’t quite human just yet, but a dream covered in flesh.
So now, 15 years later, I still hold on to this idea of love, but of course I know that love is much more than passion and chemistry and cheesy one liners. Love takes work to keep this feeling going. Love takes commitment and understanding, compassion and forgiveness, compromise. Love takes friendship.
But I guess a 14 year old has got to learn the hard way.