Luck of the Draw

We are on a quest.  A quest for luck to be precise. FIND YOUR LUCKY CHARM. I don’t really consider myself to be a particularly lucky person.   I’m not unlucky but I’ve certainly never felt like I was destined to win the lottery or that a trip to Vegas would be anything other than a chance to catch a couple of shows and probably eat too much.  And, that’s fine with me.  I’ve somewhat held to the notion (fairly ridiculous upon re-examination) that any stroke of incredibly unlikely good luck (a one-in-a-million lottery purse) could make you just as likely to be plucked from the masses for an incredibly unlucky fate (being struck by lightning). The idea being that I’d rather be one of the many unremarkable folks moving through life managing an average amount of both good and bad luck.  I’ll pass on the one-in-a-million opportunity because odds are it could be the bad one-in-a-million not the good.

I do believe you make your own luck in many situations.  But, there are some people who just seem to be luckier than others.  When our daughters were in grade school we used a common deciding tool for many everyday situations: the coin toss.  Over time a unusual pattern developed, Rachel won-if not every toss-almost all of them.  It got so bad that when we would even mention tossing a coin as a means to resolution Elisabeth would cry. Coin tosses became a thing of the past as we adopted a more, shall we say, flexible mode of decision: pick a number.  I wouldn’t say that Rachel is any luckier in life than Elisabeth but she certainly had a way with a quarter.


Our guiding book suggests being “on the lookout for these 10 symbols of good luck”:

  1. Four-leaf clover
  2. Shooting star
  3. Heads-up penny
  4. Rabbit’s foot
  5. Wishbone
  6. Horseshoe
  7. Bamboo
  8. Ladybug
  9. Rainbow
  10. Number 7

Let’s talk about some of these lucky symbols.  Obviously, I will not be on the lookout for a rabbit’s foot.  I’m embarrassed to admit that at some point during my childhood I won a rabbit’s foot keychain at the state fair and didn’t think one bit about it being awful or disgusting!  Frankly, I can’t believe it’s still on this list.  Thanksgiving was the big day for the wishbone.  That’s a pretty disgusting one, too.  Really kind of a messed up version of making a wish after blowing out your birthday candles. But, you have to battle for the chance to make the wish.  I had no idea that bamboo was considered good luck.  Maybe lucky symbols are regional?  In Oklahoma, you get a rabbit’s foot and in Florida you get bamboo?  Does bamboo even grow in the US?  It might be tricky to find.  Does it count if you buy it at the store?

Do you have a good luck charm?  A lucky number? I am partial to the number 10, probably like everyone else born on the 10th. Does anyone have a lucky number that isn’t the number of their birthday?  Do you have a superstitious routine required before you complete a particular task?  Superstitions and luck are close relatives.  I’m a knock-wood and fingers-crossed type of person.  I’ll admit it.  I say them without even thinking about it!  I’m not sure that I know what I consider to be my good luck charms.  Join me as I try to determine what I think brings me good luck.  Keep your eyes open for some of these good luck symbols.  Let me know if you come across any along the way and maybe together we can find all ten!  I mean, all nine…you know which one we are skipping.

Before you go…did you know that your odds of being struck by lightning during a single year are 1 in 960,000. Your odds of being struck by lightning twice in your lifetime are 1 in 9 million, which is still a higher chance than winning on of those giant Powerballs!




Lessons Learned

Today is my 49th birthday.  I’m not embarrassed to say that I love my birthday. I’m also not embarrassed to tell people my age. I’ll take every birthday I can get and wear them proudly. Because it’s my birthday, and I share it with Chuck Norris…you read that right, Chuck Norris, I decided that I would recap some of the things I’ve learned since this adventure began a little over two months ago.   So in no particular order:

1.  If you want to ensure you do something, tell a lot of people.  This is not new but I believe this is the first time I’ve really put it into practice.  One day, I was talking to my sister on the phone and I said I had to go and get on the treadmill.  She said, “I wish I could make myself do that.” Well, tell a bunch of people you are going to run a 5K and you can.

2.  I can run for 22 minutes straight.  That might not seem like a lot but, trust me when I speak for non-runners, that it feels like a long time.  The Couch to 5K program starts by alternating walking with jogging for small amounts of time that increase in duration.  Now, I just run, no walking breaks.  And I can do it. I am  decidedly a turtle on the course but slow and steady wins the race…or at least allows me to run without stopping.  If you are interested in starting to run, I highly recommend the Couch to 5K app.

3.  Just because your first cake from scratch turns out ok doesn’t mean your next one will.

4.  I’m delighted and embarrassed that people read the blog. It’s amazing how contradictory a single set of feelings can be. I work hard to make the posts relatable and hopefully enjoyable so why, when someone mentions they read it, do I feel like crawling under the covers. I’m incredibly honored that you read the blog even if I turn bright red if you talk to me about it. Please keep reading AND telling me you read it.

5.  Get out of your own way.  Putting yourself out there is scary.  I’m a private person.  Starting a blog and trying to honestly convey my thoughts and feelings about life is not really in my comfort zone.  I think it’s safe to say that feeling vulnerable or, more likely, avoiding feeling vulnerable is the cause of a lot of fear and anxiety.  While I’ve enjoyed writing each of the posts, when it’s time to push that publish button my inner critic goes into full gear. “Why would anyone want to read this?”  “You are embarrassing yourself.” “No one reads this anyway.” I’m sure you have a similar voice that speaks to you when you put yourself out there.  Stop listening to it.

Before you go…I also share a birthday with Carrie Underwood, my fellow Oklahoman; Martellus Bennett, a professional football player and owner of  The Imagination Agency which is dedicated to encouraging kids to pursue their dreams; and Jon Hamm-good looking AND funny!  Just to keep it real I feel compelled to mention that Osama bin Laden was also born on March 10.  Unfortunately that’s usually the way life works.  If you get Chuck, you also get Osama.