anxiety, humor, inspiration, life lessons, mindfulness, motivation

I Want To Be A Cowgirl

“I want to be a cowboy, but only long enough to barge into a saloon and bellow ‘Where’s the yellow belly that stole my happy trail?'” — Jared Kintz

courtesy of wikipedia
courtesy of wikipedia

I used to occasionally catch a western with my dad (typically while he was changing channels and got hooked by something John Wayne or Lee Marvin or Clint Eastwood was doing).  My love of horses made it impossible to watch any of the scenes which intimated that they were uncomfortable or angry in anyway.  But galloping through an open field?  I’d watch and put myself in that saddle.  Slamming one’s body into the swinging door of a bar and with one look rendering a crowded room silent?  Oh yeah.   There’s a new sheriff in town and her name is Mimi (ok, I have to change that).

I also wanted to be the next Barbra Streisand, but that’s a story for another day.

And come up with the formula for world peace – I’m still working on that one.

“Where’s the yellow belly who stole my happy trail?”  How awesome it would be if one could point a gloved finger at that varmint.

You know where I’m going with this – who would you point your finger at?  Ain’t no one there, darn it, unless one is looking in the mirror.

We steal our happiness all the time.  That interlude between moments that is so easily sabotaged by our confusion or displeasure, asserting that we are the victims of circumstance, a person, a poor choice.  The thought that I am that yellow belly is anathema to me.  And yet.  Once again the duality of our humanity makes itself known.  We are both fearless and petrified;  hell-bent and heaven seeking.  Bartender, just leave me the bottle.

The older I get, the more I realize that this is the town I rode into.  The trail is far more littered with wildflowers than dead bodies (figuratively speaking – I am a cowboy without a gun).  I have undermined my sense of self-worth far more than anybody else, the amount I have gambled reflects my own fear and ambivalence, my delights have been incredible, my pain has been fierce.  And they’ve all been mine.

Every cowtown I’ve ever lived in has offered food, shelter, employment, sunshine.  So I’ve had the ridiculous luxury of feeling lousy over things that are dreams for many in this world.  So why would I self-sabotage my happy trail?  Because sometimes it’s the easier choice.  Sometimes, it’s far easier to think “yeah, but…”.  The problem of course is that there is no happy ending with that script.  One rides off into a barren field, head down – defeated by one’s self.  And that just isn’t the way any movie should end.

So I get up on my horse, settle my butt into a well-worn saddle and look at the horizon with a delicious sense of the possible.   I nicker to my horse and we ride..while I sing “People”.  Must be the reason why I never made it in show business.


58 thoughts on “I Want To Be A Cowgirl”

  1. I love this. If we just could learn that what we see in that mirror is a big part of our attitude we could find ways to deal with the rest. Thanks.

    1. Thank you so much!! I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to think that I touched that beautiful heart of yours. ❤ (still haven't figured that out – but I will)

  2. So why would I self-sabotage my happy trail? Because sometimes it’s the easier choice.

    Boy-oh-boy am I guilty of this. And have only recently come to realize it. Great post that has made me stop and think. Thanks.

  3. I grew up with Dale Evans and Roy Rogers movies (I was VERY young) so I wanted to be a cowgirl. Love how you made a lesson and absolutely love Waylon Jennings! You made me smile while the snowstorm is raging here.

    1. We’re waiting for the snow here (it has yet to begin to spit, let alone rage)…And we are of the same generation – though I never wanted to be Dale – I always thought Roy had the better gig.. 😉

  4. Came over from Misifusa’s blog!!! Lovely sentiments here and I am glad she redirected my bloggy eyes this morning!!! Going to enjoy the “town” I rode into today! Thanks!

  5. Mimi,
    First of all, I love the mixed metaphor – it made laugh – as I could certainly see myself riding off into the sunset singing “People.” And yes, if I choose, I’m the one wearing the black hat! Great post, friend!

    1. Hi Cathy and thank you! I am a mixed metaphor – arguably we all are. And whenever I rode, I’d sing. Somehow I convinced myself the horse enjoyed it. Truth is, I still sing when I’m around them…or in the shower. 😉

  6. I just recently rediscovered the 1980s song “I Want to be a Cowyboy” (Boys Don’t Cry) and it cracks me up every time. Not where you were going with this, I know, but the music in my head has started once again just the same. Yes, we sabatoge our own happiness daily. Trying especially to teach my oldest that we’re responsible for our own happiness and won’t get anywhere blaming others. But I also run around with my share of heavy heart and victim-ish feelings. How to dig ourselves out?

    Thanks for another insightful post, Sheriff Mimi 😀

    1. Funny – I listened to that song this morning!! And I’m as guilty of sabotaging myself as everyone else, so I probably shouldn’t wear the Sheriff’s badge (unless it’s reflective of how well I do it). How do we dig ourselves out? Time, a switch in direction, a brief pity party, chocolate – any or all of these and then some? 😉

      1. Love it, Mimi! Practical can-do advice. I’m in 🙂 Time elapses while we enjoy chocolate (and wine) at a pity party, then we have to switch direction because we feel oversugared and a bit tipsy. Sounds doable 😀

  7. I love this post! This morning I was feeling a bit sorry for myself (why aren’t I more successful; why don’t I have more clients) and then I remembered that I always have enough to do the things I want, in addition to that food, shelter, employment and sunshine that some only dream of. So, who stole my happy trail? Me, thought I’m bringing it back. 🙂

    1. We all steal our own happiness Carolann – even though we want to stay on that path so very much. I”m glad you’re getting back on track – that makes my day!

  8. This is perfect for today and your words are really just what I needed. I am packing up and coming to live your town; will even be your deputy if you need the day off or want to go and sit at the saloon for a spell 🙂 . I am short on words today…but please know how much I adore this post. xoxo

    1. You are hereby deputized – though I’m not so sure I qualify as the sheriff. But come to live in my town – absolutely!! That way we can leave bread crumbs together..xox

  9. “We are both fearless and petrified; hell-bent and heaven seeking.” What a GREAT turn of phrase!! I loved this post from beginning to end, sweet friend–the humor, the candor, a gentle poke from the cowpoke (I’m sorry, that was dreadful, but I just couldn’t resist…) There is so much wisdom here, and it’s *just* what I need to hear at the moment. Thank you, honey, from the bottom of my lily-livered heart…. 😉 xoxxo, L

    1. Let me tell you about that lily-livered heart of yours – it’s as big as Texas and far more beautiful (not that I have anything against Texas). And I’ll take your humorous pokes anytime..xoxo, m

  10. I watched Roy and Dale…but I always wanted to be Annie Oakley. I have a photo of me at about age 6 or 7 in a cowgirl outfit, boots and all, and I use that as a reminder that I can be that cowgirl if I want to.
    Loved this post, and now whenever I see an old Western movie and see someone on a horse I’m going to think of Barbara Streisand.

  11. I love love love how you framed this truism. I, too, watched the Westerns with Dad (pasta westerns..:) and of course, loved/love horses so much (plus girls just have this thing for horses–I bleev it is our first love) I spent my formatives in MT, so there were a’plenty around…:)

    (I did say y’all in all seriousness, and I know some jargon to this day, hehe)

    The thing is–this is so true. The naysayer inside. I reject myself so much sooner and out of hand than the imagined rejecter might–i have been realizing this more and more, realizing it all comes from fear (whether that be of success is another story) and of late, have developed a bit of a: dam the torpedoes attitude.

    The worst that could happen is that I was accepted! (whee!)

    A gem. From the MiMi in all of us…;)

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