At one point there was a crowd of campers in our site, huddled in for assurance and protection. Kids were crying, adults were talking about packing up and leaving, crazy guys were yelling back in their own camp, pit bulls were barking, and we were all waiting for the sheriff to arrive. Then, for a while I was there all by myself, sitting on the step of my trailer with my phone in my pocket, a two-way radio in one hand, and my very heavy steel ring mandrel in the other. It was tense and scary, and not what you expect when you go camping just outside of Ashland, which is so nice and clean and proper it borders on being pinched up.
Eventually a ride came to get the guys, and things settled down quickly after that. Rick and I sat outside with a little shot of whiskey to calm our nerves, and talked about how we did, and what we can do better. I guess we have to get tougher and bust up potentially bad situations before they have a chance to turn that corner. This is not what a camp host is supposed to do, but it is what it is, and we're still determined to do the best we can.
And a funny thing, to me anyway, is that if Rick gets the permanent job here, I think I'd be willing to give this another shot next summer. I must be crazy, and there are still too many unknowns, but what I'm finding through all this is a lot of strength I didn't know I had. Rick keeps using the word "test", but I prefer "challenge". A test is something you can fail, while a challenge pushes you to be better. We're both being challenged in big ways this summer, and some days is feels like it's coming at us from all sides, with the crazy park, the uncertainty of the next few months, and the situation with our house in Taos. It could crumble me if I let it, but I'm better than that.
I have a tattoo that looks like this. It's the I Ching symbol for Chaos, and the meaning is, "Before a great vision can become reality there may be difficulty. Before a person begins a great endeavor, they may enounter chaos. As a new plant breaks the ground with great difficulty, foreshadowing the huge tree, so must we sometimes push against difficulty in bringing forth our dreams. "Out of Chaos, Brilliant Stars are Born." Visit Haiku Designs for a print to hang on your wall. I had the print for a long time before I had it printed on my skin. That's how loudly it speaks to me. Chaos is where great dreams begin.
I've been thinking about adding to this tattoo for a while now. I think the time is right. I want to add butterflies, and maybe stars and flowers, all emerging from the Chaos. It's time to coax the great dreams into action. I recently explained to my Dad, who doesn't get my tattoos, but tries to understand, that to me they're like Notes From God. They're things I need to be reminded of, to keep me going and keep me strong. And as a "visual person" it works well for me to have my reminders where I can see them easily. They're like notes in a book, which I also have plenty of, but these are notes to myself, on my self.
Chaos... there's more than enough to go around. We must be in for some really great things in this world. Hold on! We're all here to help each other get through this.