TammyThomas

Ethics In Sports

The Resilient Cyclist – A Peaceful Life, Part 3

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October 23, 2015

Hello, and welcome back to my blog! It’s easier for single people to get depressed. When I come home, there’s no one to talk to about my day or the struggles I face. I do have a cat, but I haven’t broken through the language barrier. The older I get, the harder it is to find friends to hang out with. That’s why I have to force myself to go places where I find like-minded people. But, where exactly do singles hang out? So far, I’ve only thought of three places: 1) a bar; 2) a gym; and 3) church. I don’t hang out in bars, so that’s out. I have my own solo mobile fitness business, so I never go to a gym. Check that one off the list. That leaves me with only one option—church. Voila! Except single people aren’t coming to church, but if they did, churches would be overcrowded. That leaves me with you guys, which is a very good crowd, indeed.

This is part three of a four part series. If you missed the first two parts of this chapter, you can easily pick them up by clicking here: http://www.thetammythomas.com/.

 

A Peaceful Life

Part 3

When I’m around my Dad, I feel safe and secure. He has always treated the women in his life with respect. He also taught me to appreciate and obey my elders, especially my Mother. She worked as the office manager for his business, and he’d have been lost without her. Daddy often picked me up from kindergarten on his motorcycle. He put my helmet (an exact match to his, minus the 1976 Arthur Fulmer Bicentennial decal) on over my pigtails. Sometimes, he allowed me to sit up front with my little hands touching the handlebars.

A double and then triple bypass slowed Daddy down a little, but not much. As Daddy’s little girl, I was determined to be just as tough as he was.

My mother stayed at home to raise Chandra and me as well as working in the family business. Chandra and I spent plenty of time helping my mother bake cookies and make ice cream, but chores were of a different nature. Chandra split chores with me: cleaning up the kitchen, setting the table, dusting the house, loading firewood, trimming the sticker bushes, and cutting the grass. Once, when shingles were being replaced on the roof of our house, we picked up the old shingles discarded from the roof, placed them in the wheelbarrow, and dumped them into the gully behind the house. In the summers, we shucked corn, peeled purple-hulled peas and lima beans, and picked tomatoes. It felt good to contribute to the household. These are memorable times, but I also remember one Thanksgiving Day when we went to the woods to load up and haul firewood. We were kids—little girls—and we didn’t want to haul firewood on Thanksgiving Day while the parades were on television.

Chores gave me the opportunity to give back to my parents for all they did for me. I began to see myself as an important contributor to the family. I felt responsible for sharing my part in the workload and a sense of accomplishment and self-worth upon completion of my assigned tasks. Chores taught me to take initiative in tasks at school, church, and other areas of my life.

As I grew older, this work ethic turned me into an independent goal-setter, pushing myself to new heights. I had confidence, and I loved a new challenge. When my parents asked me to complete a job or a chore, it made me feel like they trusted me with something important and that they had confidence in me to take on that responsibility. Considering my Father’s perfectionist approach to work, I felt satisfied to hear my parents say, “the yard looks good, Tammy”, or “job well done on the hedges out front”.

Sundays were for Sunday school, followed by church. During the summertime, there was also family gatherings for fish fries, barbecue chicken, and old fashion hand-cranked ice cream. Other afternoons, I would go back to church at four o’clock for youth choir practice and sing during the evening church service afterwards. Although I was mostly an introvert, I did enjoy being the center of attention whenever I had the chance, and the youth musicals produced by my church provided me with another opportunity. I loved being on stage, but I hated having to practice—it was time I could have been outside playing basketball, running around, or fishing with my grandparents. During the school year, I attended youth prayer breakfast on Wednesday mornings. Friday evenings were spent doing youth activities with the church instead of hanging out in the parking lot with the other kids my age. I wanted to be there—I was a good kid, and I didn’t want to get in with the wrong crowd.

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Next week, I’ll send you the rest of A Peaceful Life. Please leave a comment below and let me know how I can improve your reading experience.

Tammy Thomas

 

Disclaimer:

I will tell you an emotionally true story in a skillful way. I will make it worth your while, and while my memory is imperfect, I haven’t invented memories. I haven’t invented facts. If I compress timelines, combine characters or conflate events, I will tell you. I have tried to recreate events, locales, and conversations from my memories of them. In order to maintain their anonymity in some instances, I have changed the names of individuals and places. I may have changed some identifying characteristics and details such as physical properties, occupations, places of residence, and others. The other people in my book might tell the story differently; this is my own, true version.

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4 Replies

  1. yvonne davis

    Hi Tammy, I am enjoying reading about things that I had forgotten. Thanks for helping me to remember ..Love you

    1. Thanks, Aunt Yvonne! Love you, too!

  2. Jim Agnew

    Started on number 4 and then had to go back and read 1-2-3. Can’t wait for 5. Thanks so much for including me.

    1. Thanks, Jim! I should go ahead and post an update soon. Cheers.

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