Fishing has taught me persistence. Fishing, among other things, but fishing is one of the most concrete examples I have been able to truly grasp and understand. I have been so busy getting my life in order. I feel as if I have been floating around like a lost kite and am finally getting pulled back down. I am finally being anchored to reality. I realize, now, after almost 4 years, that I need consistency. I talked about this in my previous post (decades ago it seems) that I need schedule and direction. It was hard to learn these things about myself.
I am not a nomad. I am not a wanderer. I like to be anchored and then to know what direction I am taking before I pull that anchor up. Don’t get me wrong, I love adventure, but in a compass type way. Where is that adventure leading? Now, if God calls me to do otherwise, I will. Realizing that it is not my plan, but His, has been part of all this as well.
When you go out on the water to fish, you hope. You hope you will get a fish. You may even pray you hook a fish. Often, more often than I would like to admit, you don’t get a fish, or the fish you wanted. Often, you don’t even get a hit or worse, a sail cat. Slimy, nasty salt water catfish will come, even if you are doing everything right! I have not wanted to go fresh water for years now, because it is hard. I have come up empty the majority of times. You have to have determination with bass. You have to keep going, time after time, even when you get nothing.
I caught 2 ten pound bass within a month when I first started fishing. Yes, two. I didn’t know what I had done then. I hadn’t really worked for it. One was on a shiner and the other was on an artificial worm. I was excited, but I didn’t really get it. We kept one of those because my husband said, I may never do that again. He said, and I believe him, that that is a lifetime fish. I heard from many people that I may never do that again. So? Stop going? No way. You really don’t know what will happen. You don’t know what is lurking beneath the surface. You don’t know what lure will work, in what area. So you go and try.
It has been an extremely hard summer for fishing. We have gotten nothing worth writing home about in months. It is discouraging. Hope dwindles. But you go.
Last night, our little was at her grandparents because we had a salt trip planned for the last day I could go during the week. We were finally moved in, everything put away and put up. A front had just come through and there was a slight drizzle. Perfect. We couldn’t resist. So we hauled the canoe down the long hill to the lake we hadn’t been in or on since we moved back.
Whoops, back up. We moved back to the house we lived in when I started this blog. We are hoping (praying) that we will be able to own this house one day. If it is God’s will, it will happen, is how we believe. So many things have happened that I would never have thought possible before. so we trust and take each step, trying to listen to God and His will. It feels peaceful and calming to be back in this house. Looking out on the view of the water makes my heart rest.
This all happened a week ago and I have not had a chance to let y’all know! Two weeks? Time is flying by. I start teaching tomorrow! So many awesome things happening. All in God’s timing.
So, like I was saying, this is all much like fishing. You go and you cast. You don’t give up. I don’t think anyone had been on the lake from our house since we left and the weeds and lily pads are high! Travis walked ahead of me, batting at the plants with the paddle, hoping to scare the snakes away. Nice. Snakes. It was a beautiful, almost cool summer evening after the rain. It was perfect. We had just planned to cruise around and check out the lake we had so greatly missed.
We cast along the bank and into the pads with soft plastics. There were active little birds all around. There were several alligators silently skimming the surface beyond the pads. I was casting my lure in the pads and letting it sink in the breaks of water when the bass hit. Awesome. Time seems to stand still. Travis said, “That’s a big one,” but I never believe him. Heart racing, I reel him in. Yep, a monster. It was a miracle we didn’t flip, we were both so excited! It means so much more after 3 solid years of trying and failing, to land a fish like that than it ever could have before. I know how hard it is. I know the effort it takes. I know you have to keep going and keep trying. I know you have to fail, often, and get back up and try again, sometimes with fresh wounds.
I think of fishing, like I think of life, like work, like marriage. The most exciting parts aren’t the most frequent. There are times that are down right awful! That is the absolute truth. You don’t forget the good when you have the bad. You enjoy the moment you are in. I still love fishing, even when I am not catching. Some of my favorite moments are times we have gone and not even gotten a hit. I have learned to enjoy just being on the water. I hope this is a sign of my growing up, a level of maturity. I hope. So, to me, persistence, is more about getting up and enjoying everyday, regardless of what it brings. It is about not giving up when there is disappointment. Great things will happen, when you just keep moving forward.