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Day 56: Understanding

Telecare is a regular stop. They focus on caring for those with mental illness and special needs. They share a building on Dorcas St. with some other non-profits and Grace University.

The lady in my phone confused me the first time I went there. She took me to 8th street and turned me south. There was nothing there but a brick wall where my target should have been.

I had to get creative. I went back the way I came. There was a multi-story building behind a large parking lot above the aforementioned brick wall. I pulled in to said lot. A trip around the South side of the building yielded hope. I found 815, but not 819.

Then I found a sign. "Telecare," it read. The receipt had the word "Telecare" on it, so I followed the breadcrumb. I went up some stairs, found a door and knocked. No answer. Found another door. Knocked. No answer. There were some doors without outside handles. I didn't knock on those ones.

I followed a curving path without luck. Then I went back. Then I followed it back up again. I found another door this time. I saw people inside. I knocked.

They hesitated to open the door, but I was persistent. I kept knocking.

They came to the window near the door. Close enough. I let them know where I was headed.

"Oh, you have to go around the corner. You'll see 819 right there," the lady said. Her voice was muffled through the glass.

I went as directed. Sure enough, there it was. I delivered the pizza, and left with more money than I started with.

Again, that first time there was brutal. I searched and searched and searched. The second time was easier, just a long walk. The third time was still a long walk, but there was ice. More treacherous. Every time, I made it. And every time, I left with more money than I started with.

Friday night's order to Telecare was a cinch. I knew where I was going. I didn't even need the lady in my phone to help me.

I turned right to pull in the parking lot the usual way and scanned the building. Then I stopped. The building was the same as it always had been, but I was seeing it from a different perspective. I recognized angles and colors and parts of the outside that I hadn't before from this vantage.

I put the car in reverse and pulled into a roundabout. A wave of relief washed over me. There, not 40 feet away, was the same Telecare door labeled '819' that took me one terrible search and several long walks to get to. I parked the car, set my hazards, delivered the food, and was back out again with more money than I had started with.

Had I been more of a Negative Nancy, maybe I would not have felt relief. Perhaps I would have been bitter. Upset. Irritated at time lost and long walks that were unnecessary in the past.

That was not how I felt. I felt relieved. Excited. Even blessed. It was like uncovering a treasure or discovering the place for the first time. Now, and every time I deliver in the future, I will be much quicker.

"RI," you ask, "what's the point?"

My point is twofold. First, part of the feeling of relief was based in a pattern of intangibles.

I'm delivering pizzas to get out of debt. My target: financial peace, for myself and every generation at or below the Princesses. The first time Amazewife and I pulled up to the "deliver the pizza" on financial peace, we butted heads. We fought. We pulled in different directions. We looked at different options. Knocked on different doors, if you will. But we were persistent. Then we found some folks who came to the window by the door and let us know which way to go.

We've taken that road several times since. It has always led back to the same principles, over and over again. The walk is still there. Sometimes it's more treacherous. But, as we master the different principles, the road gets shorter. We view the concept from a different perspective and recognize landmarks in our behavior. We don't butt heads as much. We arrive smiling and leave with more money than we started with. That brings me to my final point.

I wouldn't exchange the struggle for anything.

I would have been a disappointment to many of you. Most of you would have pulled in, found the roundabout right away and would not have had to struggle.

If you had been watching me Hunger Games style from little cameras along my path – but without the fireballs, dogs, or other Tributes – you would have yelled. You would have huffed. You would have shaken your head. You would have posted 'SMH' to your Facebook status.

You would have facepalmed.

October-18-2011-20-12-49-DoubleFacePalm

And that's ok. I've disappointed a lot of people in my life. But the struggle is worth it. I am more useful to you, my Wife and my wonderful family after every struggle for new perspective.

In your financial or other struggles, just keep on keeping on. You'll get there. You'll get there and you'll deliver. Then you'll leave with a smile, better off than when you started. I promise.

ROE INTENSE

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