do you hear what I hear

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“What’s that noise?” “Do you hear what I hear?” I asked. They look around as if they might see what it is they think I hear… Nothing. “What noise?” is the common reply. “You can’t hear that?” I ask with a mocking question in my voice. “I can’t hear anything!” they respond. I step closer to them, bend over slightly and say, “Oh!” – “There it is!” – “I know that sound… That’s the sound of butterflies!!!”

I chuckle at my classic, rarely appreciated humor. Sometimes they smile, sometimes they roll their eyes, but they’ve been distracted, at least for the moment from the circumstance that has them nervous and anxious. I know that feeling all to well… It’s easy for me to joke about it, I’m plagued by it as much as anyone, I think.

There is never a game I coach, regardless of who we’re playing that I don’t get nervous, or get “butterflies,” as it’s commonly referred to. In extremely competitive games, I can drink a ton of water and still have cotton mouth… Yeah, I’m pathetic…

I’ve used that little butterfly humor with my daughters and lots of the others I’ve coached. I think it’s good to care enough to do and be our best during not only a competition but also life… Then like all other things in life there are themes  we carry  all too far. I’ve been guilty of that all my life… Even the insignificant things become monumental.

While I think a certain amount of chemicals released by natural means into the bloodstream can be good, anything in excess can be harmful. There are adrenaline junkies who usually fall into this category of competitive junkies. Often those of us with these tendencies fall into the category of selfish, which encompasses pride, ego, and insecurity issues to name a few.

I’m not against competition or a free market where that healthy competition pushes humans to new heights in any endeavor. Much like all things in this life, the things we put our heart into can become addictive, the thing that becomes poison to us and even the people around us.

Those innocent butterflies that start naturally in innocence can turn into man, time, peace, and joy eaters. Stress steals our most precious asset; time. After living on the crest of a constant wave of adrenaline and stress for a huge portion of my life, I’m ready to let the swarm, flock, or herd of whatever you call a group of butterflies, out of the corral of my stomach.

I find more enjoyment now in a slow heart beat unless exercising. I also find that state of being when I’m seeking God’s will and relying on Him instead of my flesh that created the herd of butterflies. I don’t know who made up the name, “butterflies” to describe the nervous feeling in our stomaches.

Mine feel more like piranhas…