Tyler’s Lemonade Stand

If you were an adult in my world when I was a kid, you probably would have thought that I would have gone into sales. Now the thought of it kind of grosses me out. Why sales? I was a Girl Scout which means I sold Girl Scout cookies. I think the only reason I even stayed in the troop for the many years that I did was because of the competition (with myself and others) of selling Girl Scout cookies. I am not going to go into details, as I have other blog posts about that.

My elementary school also raised money by selling nuts and candy every year. I cannot even remember the prize — maybe it was just knowing I sold near if not at the top of my class. At the same time I also had my own paper route. I delivered the “The Star Press” which meant it was the evening/afternoon newspaper. (Thank goodness, as I am so not a morning person). Every few months our manager would ask us to go “canvassing” where basically he would take us to strange and sketchy neighborhoods, often at night and ask us to go door-to-door to see if we could get folks to sign up for the newspaper. That was the least glamorous of all the gigs even with the random prizes and money he would throw in each night to see who would be encouraged to try harder and come out on top. Mind you — I was nine at the time.

And, yet, I am not in sales and I do not even dream of ever being in sales as a career. (My dad would have been so bummed). I often wonder what propelled me to want to excel and do so well selling things door-to-door. I was not a crazy outgoing kid, but somehow going door-to-door, selling on college campuses, and the competition of it all was an adrenaline rush for me.

Fast forward to 2015 and I come across “Tyler’s Lemonade Stand Fundraiser.” Tyler lives in Grafton, NY and decided to raise money for a police sergeant that was battling cancer and could not work. See this video of the long line of police cars that come to pay Tyler a visit and show their support. So far Tyler has raised $1500. Amazing. Now that is sales and talent put to good use. You rock, Tyler.

Let the crap get you to your answers…

I just finished reading: “The True Secret of Writing: Connecting Life With Language” by Natalie Goldberg. Such a great book, especially if you enjoy writing and want to be inspired and pushed to a new place in your daily writing. I love how she tells you to just write, to just put the crap down, not to analyze it, but just write.

Even though I write 5 blog posts a week, I still actually write in a journal that is just for me. Sometimes it is a recap of events from my day, or how I am feeling about something, or I cuss, and go off on people. Writing in my journal allows me to make sense of my day-to-day world. It allows me to see what comes out of me, that I may not have known was in me. This was one of my favorite quotes from her book:

“Feel free to write the worst junk in America. You have to turn over your mind a lot for the gems to pop out. And really in True Secret Retreats and in writing practice we are not looking for the gems, but a way to meet and accept our whole mind. Writing down the boring, the complaining, the violent, the agitated, obsessive, destructive, mean, shameful, timid, weak thoughts allows us to see them, make friends with those parts of ourselves. They won’t then rule us. We won’t be running from them, or battling them in meditation—or in our lives. Writing practice asks all parts of us to come forward. And when we get out of the way and stop judging, aren’t they all their own peculiar impersonal gems?” page 21

She makes you think. Write the good, the bad, and the ugly. As I said earlier, writing helps us to know what is really in our mind, the front, back, and deep parts of what we are thinking. Sometimes we have to get through all our crappy thoughts, our anguish, our pain to see the real issues that baffle us.

So whether you write regularly, sporadically, or not at all, I encourage you to follow Goldberg’s advice. Write down the crap, write it all down, and I bet, if you stick with it, the letters that form into words, into sentences, will begin to tell a story. Maybe it will be just for you, or maybe you will want to share it. Those letters and words often tell us what is inside that we often do not know how to make sense of it. Let the crap get you to your answers.