Giving Myself Permission To Be Me; What makes you happy?

I've been in research mode, reflection mode and healing mode the past few weeks (well, months.)  It's time for some changes in my life and I've been sorting through what they might be and what they might become. 

The forces of evil have been whipping about me and my family for the duration of the summer of 2009 with the force of a Katrina wind.  Others have sought to bring ruin upon me and my household and I'm sure they're feeling very good about themselves and their worthless greed.  May God have mercy on you.  You'll need it. 

When I was younger, I wanted to be a novelist.  But the problem I had was the issue with the classic "Narrative Arc," where a story begins with a complication, it then becomes something of a crisis and then at the very end, we begin to see solutions developing that leave our cast of characters riding off into the sunset. You see, I like people too much and it pains me to see them cast about into a tempest of wickedness.  That's why I typically will only watch films like, It's A Wonderful Life at the beginning and skip the whole part of where George Bailey gets to the crisis section.  I then pick back up when he wants to live again.  That's just who I am.  I don't seek confrontation, I don't like confrontation, but if you bring it to my door, threaten me, or try to deprive me of what I've come by honestly, well, then I have a problem with you. 

My summer-long self analysis has given me pause to refocus on the things in life that make me the happiest.  The sad part is I'm still tied to people who would rather see only the negative, who think that it's someone else's job to provide them an easy ride, and they are entitled.  

Life is too short for all that drama.  We're only given so much time here in this life.  I don't understand why others choose to focus on what's wrong with life, rather than how to change it for the better. Maybe I never will. 

Yesterday I began reading "Crush It!" by Gary Vaynerchuk.  I bought the book using my Barnes & Noble eReader and I've been going through it here on my Mac.  (This is a great way to read a book like this because I can go through it and highlight it as I read.)  Gary's primary advice is to find what you like doing in life and begin doing it. 

"In this book I’ll explain step by step how to use all the social networking tools on the Internet to take whatever it is that rocks your world—the activity that you would do every minute if you could, the topic that you just can’t shut up about, the product that you would like to put in everyone’s hands—and build it into not just a business but a powerful personal brand that makes you all the money and, more important, brings you all the happiness you could ever want.", [Gary Vaynerchuk, Crush It!]

 He encourages readers to find their passion in life and then find a way to make that become your job.  Because of if it is your job, something you can support yourself with, then it won't feel like work and you'll be having the time of your life. 

I'm on that course of development.  I have been for the past couple of months in hours and hours of reflection, praying and taking long walks with myself.  It didn't take beginning to read this book yesterday to tell me to do this.  It was something I came to on my own.  

Throughout my life, I've had some great friends.  Through Facebook, I've been able to find some of my childhood friends, and I'm so thankful I've found them.  But when it comes down to it, friends, family, etc. the only thing that's going to make me happy is being who I am.  Me.  I can't be a person someone else wishes me to be.  I can't let external forces beyond my control ruin my life.  I must be quick to adapt, modify course, and keep on plugging.  (After all these years, it appears Marlo Thomas was right!)

I don't know where my life journey of today is going to take me.  In some ways, that's a good thing.  In others, I wish I knew so I could plan a little better.  

But no matter what happens today, no matter who tries to push mountains in front of my progress, no matter who makes up lies about me, no matter who tries to take things from me that I earned through hard work and dedication, I have a God in Heaven who loves me, who is going to protect me from the forces of that evil no matter what, and in the end, it is that same God who is going to smile upon me at the end of my long day's work, and tell me well done. 

My blessings in this life have been plenty.  My hardships have seemed to mount the past few months, but the evil of Satan, the greed and dishonesty of others, isn't enough to get me down, because no matter how hard they try, the one thing they can't deprive me of, is my freedom to be me.  

This is an image of the tree line from the new County Road 510 Bridge near Marquette, Michigan.


Donald J. Claxton | The Timberlander, a selfie from camping for 13 weeks in 2022 on the Claxton family land in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, northwest of Marquette.

Donald J. Claxton is
‘The Timberlander’

Hello, I’m Donald J. 

I refer to myself as “The Timberlander” because I love off-grid living and woodworking.

My Great Pyrenees, Maycee, and I enjoy spending our time in the woods of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

In the UP, I craft, make, grow, run, carve, and generate:

  • Custom crosses
  • Timber frame shelters
  • A garden
  • My water
  • Basswood figurines and ornaments
  • My own power

Check out my crafts for sale in The Timberlander’s Treasures.

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