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Friday, October 19, 2012

Oprah Moment/Baby Steps

It's Friday and I have a date! Gotta give you the back story. Landmark seminar yesterday evening. Was going to go with little thought to appearance, but there's this guy who kind of appeals to me - whom I've had my eye on for a while. And I'm not sure why I like him - he's not really firing on all cylinders - think he's professionally floundering, he's admittedly damaged but he is brave and funny and incredibly enthusiastic about what the future offers. Oh, and kind of cute with a voice like a broadcaster and I'm a sucker for a great speaking voice.

So, midway during the evening as the group was going to the mike and sharing breakthroughs as a result of working the seminar, I recounted the story about Josefien and the postal emergency - the concert in a car.  Luke had gotten up right before me and confessed that while his progress was not measurable, he was feeling ready to pounce and perform and make meaningful life changes. Moderator challenged him to be specific and asked him about his personal life and whether he had made any progress in finding a relationship. Luke hung his head. The moderator/coach challenged him to go on three dates by next Thursday - one week.

So, after telling of Josefien to the delight of the group, I ended by saying, as I looked at him (right up there at the mike in front of everyone), "Oh, and Luke, I'll go out with you."  Everyone gasped, took the room by surprise - 'twas an Oprah moment. Fun and bold, right? I sat down, he was seated in the row behind me. He leaned forward and kissed me on the cheek.

So tonight he'll pick me up and we'll go to Schaller's together - a few friends will join us and I'm thinking we'll have a really fun evening. Makes sense I'd find someone at Landmark - people get a sense of each other there and there is something so endearing about being real and vulnerable - shedding artifice. Not sure I would have given Luke a second look in the "real" world but knowing his back story - how his father kicked him across the room when he left the family (tiny Luke was holding for dear life to his father's legs in an effort to get him to stay), makes me see him differently.

Saturday at midnight Lucas (Liza), Convex (James) and I will drive to Baltimore for Henry's third appointment since the cochlear implants. It will be a grueling drive - we're driving straight through. His appointment is first thing Monday morning and afterwards we will drive straight back to Chicago, arriving in the wee hours of Tuesday. SO, not looking forward to this but it's an important contribution - she needs our help. Oh, and no blog post on Monday, obviously.

Henry's progress is baby steps. No one understands that he's a hearing newborn. Liza keeps getting well-meaning calls from friends and relatives asking if he's starting to speak yet. They don't understand just what's going to be involved to get him there. Right now he's like a five month old, hearing sounds but not making sense of them, ignoring most of them, making a few connections here and there. The other day, Liza was walking with him and they were crunching through fallen leaves. Every now and then Henry would stop and look around confused. He'd walk again and stop again. Liza couldn't figure out what he was trying to make sense of - figured he was hearing something but not sure what.  After a few minutes, she realized it was the sound of the leaves underfoot that intrigued him and she pointed to them. Stomped them and then stopped, stomped them again. Henry laughed at her, disbelieving, not believing it was the leaves he was hearing. She's still not sure he doesn't think it was something else, like a hidden squirrel or bird. Anyway, you get the idea. Before Henry speaks, he has a whole lot of contextual work to do to make sense of his new sense.

Today, a chock full day. D-Day with the IRS (I owe them a ton of money and we're trying to work something out) is in a little over a week. Letter from them requiring huge amounts of documentation that I have to scramble to produce. The old Sarah would feel like throwing up about now. New Sarah will provide everything they're asking for and then trust that something workable will be the result. And I'm not being complacent or naively trusting in the future - I know they have the capacity to make things tough. It's just that I know they can't take from me the things that I value most: my family, friends, health and creativity.

Challenge today is....I dunno, putting yourself in my shoes? What if you were in trouble with the Feds and stood to lose much of what you'd acquired? If you had to itemize what's most important in your life, would you be sturdy, like me,  knowing you would be fine 'cuz your priorities are right where they should be? It's a terrific feeling and one that is bringing me a lot of peace as I enter a period of uncertainty.


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