"Whatever you are not changing, you are choosing." — Laurie Buchanan

Each year at this time I trim our rose canes back to half their length. Typically I wear gloves when I tackle this task — except this year. By letting my guard down, I got a tear in my thumb. After cleaning it up, I put a Band-Aid on it. Unfortunately, it hindered my typing.

That’s when I discovered New-Skin Liquid Bandage. It goes on clear and forms a protective shield — a waterproof barrier that provides me with unencumbered, full use of my thumb!

Liquid Bandage

It brought to mind Captain Kirk ordering Shields Up! as the Starship Enterprise braced itself for a fiery blast from the Klingons.

“This is the Captain. Condition Yellow Alert. Phaser crews stand by. Deflector shields up. We’re going in. Peacefully, I hope. But peacefully or not, we’re going in.”

In life we have visible and invisible barriers and boundaries — protective shields — that safeguard our physical and emotional wellbeing.

Have you ever let your guard down?

Laurie Buchanan

Whatever you are not changing, you are choosing.” — Laurie Buchanan

The Book — Discovering the Seven Selves
The Experience — Life Harmony

© Laurie Buchanan 2014

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Comments on: "Captain Kirk — Shields Up!" (68)

  1. Will wonders never cease! Liquid bandages! Dare I ask what’s next? *biggest grin* Happy Tuesday, dear Laurie!! Hugs, Cher xo

  2. I’ll have to look for this product. Last summer a friend helping me in the garden cut her thumb on a pair of pruners. She asked for super glue, smeared a tad of it over the cut then put a bandaid on it. The New Skin Liquid bandage sounds much better.

  3. I let my guard down…and fell in love. Best decision ever! :-)

    I love that New-skin. Being a gardener, I really appreciate being able to use my hands when I let my guard down and have way too much fun in the dirt. :-) KMC

  4. LOL Always the humor to begin to take on something very meaningful.

    Boundaries, shields, walls, protective skin, all important to the container of our lives, our emotional and physical well being.

    I had not been aware that I had let my guard down until I watched a video of End of the World (music video). I was aware of the words for someone had shared them in post, upon watching and hearing Matt Alber’s deep sad expressiveness voice, the sobbing began, tears flowed like they have not flowed for a long time. Muffin even came into the room to nudge me. So shields were weak, caught off guard.

  5. Have I let my guard down? Of course: Not wearing a bib when eating spaghetti–ha!

    And just like Karen–fell in love, saw stars, no regrets there either.

  6. I let my guard down often. We can’t learn well suited up.

    One little factoid someone told me is that our healing time doubles every decade after 50 or some such thing. Scraped knees in childhood disappear fast. Not so in old age. We need more liquid protection.

    Happy bandaid-free typing, Laurie. You do a lot of it!

    • Shirley – Thank you for sharing that wonderful factoid. And you’re oh-so-right: some of my best lessons were accompanied by cuts, scrapes, and bruises — body, mind, and spirit :)

  7. Yesterday…..tripped in garage……all I could think of while I kayed on the concrete and asphalt was “what was I thinking when I stepped over tge rolled up carpet” geez….now I ache this morning and dont want to get up.

  8. Do I let my guard down? I don’t know. It’s either up or down all the time I think and I shall have to ponder which it is. And look for that liquid bandage since I seem to be on a roll with cutting fingers.

  9. First off, Laurie, as a life-long STAR TREK fan in all its incarnations, I can connect to your aptly applied lead in. Live long and prosper! And never underestimate the Klingons!

    I can well understand the difficulty in typing after that lamentable thumb tear. Hopefully you are healing up now my friend.

    Yes, one is always in danger of letting their guard down, and being engulfed in some adverse circumstance as a result. I recently let my guard down during a negotiating session for my new leased Honda Odyssey with one of those smooth talking care salesman, who always seem to find additional ways to extort more $$$$. God, do they wear you down! Ugh.

    • Sam – I love your quote, “Never underestimate the Klingons.” The silver lining in regards to your Honda Odyssey is that it’s so well suited for your family; it’s practically tailor made :)

  10. I suppose I let my guard down all the time and have had more than my share of close-encounters with thorns. Cuenca’s major international export is the long-stemmed rose. We get 20 for $4. I know. It’s hard to believe.

    Hugs from Ecuador,
    Kathy

  11. Yep, never without new skin Liquid Bandage :) Always let the guard down but try to always remember there are thorns on roses…..clever write, my dear friend!

    Solarcaine works wonders for further healing too after the bleeding stops.

  12. What a terrific Green Brain Question. I have a Blue Brain Personality. Blue Brainers usually do not have to let their guard down, because they do not put one up. However 9 years ago, when I began my 6th decade, I learned enhance my Green Brain perspective and become selective and discerning about individuals. I enjoy and I am grateful for my new Green attributes and abilities. However, as Kermit says, “It isn’t easy being Green!”

  13. my blog is the essence of testing my comfort zone. I wonder sometimes about the impact spiritually and emotionally. Many writers are reclusive by nature, and the enforced socializing that’s hand in hand with one’s written work is a whole new fold in the strata. I wonder what Hemingway–what Freud would have made of it all…

  14. Interesting Laurie,

    Shields and barriers are so important to life.
    Without any sort of barrier, we could not survive.
    Our cells have membranes and our bodies have skin (as the song goes, to keep the outside out and the inside in). People who lose more than 20% of their skin to burns or abrasion rarely survive.

    The trick with any barrier is the degree of permeability. How much of what do we let through? And how much energy do we need to put in to chuck out unwanted stuff that seeps in.

    At every level we need some way of getting in the stuff we really need, and minimising the amount of unwanted and potentially dangerous stuff.

    And being humans we have many levels of shields. Cells membranes and skin are the obvious physical ones, our eyes, nose membranes, mouth, gut, and lungs are slightly less obvious, but still there. Internally we have blood vessels and lymph system etc.

    When we get past the physical and into the software (spiritual) side of being human, we have so many levels of barrier that we build during our development, most of which most of us are completely unaware of.
    Many of those levels of barrier are important for our early development, but need to be dismantled as soon as possible after having served their developmental purpose, but in most of us they stick around.

    I’ve spent quite a bit of time dismantling most of the no-longer required barriers from my development, and have replaced a few of them with systems I have designed myself to detect and isolate malicious intrusion.
    So mostly I operate in a very open and trusting mode.

    Many think of me as naive, and in one sense I suppose I am, but in a much deeper sense it is a conscious choice to take the risks involved and enjoy the benefits that come from such risk.
    Yes sometimes trust is broken, and there is pain and unwanted consequence, and the vast majority of the time people respect the trust, and I get the benefits of communication and relationship.

    • Ted – You have hit the nail squarely on the head:

      “At every level we need some way of getting in the stuff we really need, and minimising the amount of unwanted and potentially dangerous stuff.”

      I love that you have your own system for detecting and isolating malicious intrusion.

      I love that you operate in an open and trusting mode.

      From where I sit, you are one of the most informed people I know — brilliant, in fact!

  15. Laurie, that and Super Glue works like a charm. I finally bought the elbow length pruning gloves because this time of year I am always plunging my arms into stickery things. As a grandparent I can say the children can slip in under the radar and surprise me at times. And quite effectively disarm me!

    • Sandi – I had no idea whatsoever about using Super Glue! As a Master Gardener who’s high-in-demand in your neck of the woods, I know that you’re constantly plunging in, yanking out, and hacking off. Your elbow-length gloves sound like the welders gloves Len uses to loan wood into the hot stove.

      I know full well that J. J. and E. use stealth mode on a regular basis to maneuver around your shield and go straight for the heart :)

  16. patricia60 said:

    I must guard doggedly – en guarde! for my boundaries can be invaded even with other’s emotions – and I often respond too quickly with ideas my brain has integrated too fast for the other person to understand.
    I suffer with the consequences of eating other’s cooking and had to give up many public events and church because of outgasing laundry products and perfume.

    We used a great deal of liquid bandage and super glue for my youngest’s 12 surgery recoveries –

    many thorns in this world – we are working on our roses right now also and trying to figure out the clematis pruning? The Hawthorn bushes are inspiring and massively thorned – hope the thumb is improving – ouch, what we do for beauty and what inspires you in clever words…thank you for sharing.

    • Patricia – As you mentioned, sometimes boundaries are crossed by those we least expect and we’re hit by “friendly fire.”

      I can’t even begin to imagine twelve surgeries. I imagine your daughter is a very brave woman.

  17. You refer to all sorts of shields, Laurie, both physical and metaphysical. Any time we love, our shields are down. I remember reading an essay once where someone referred to loving a pet animal as “making a contract with sorrow” for we know we are probably going to outlive that animal. Yet, if we are to love and commit fully, our shields must be down. But the strength to survive such vulnerability comes from our knowing we remain intact even when we are wounded.

    • Barbara – You’ve painted an excellent word picture here. I’ve never heard the “making a contract with sorrow” statement as it relates to companion animals, but it’s absolutely accurate as I can attest to from personal experience.

  18. Every time I’m being myself, I’m letting my guard down. I love that clear liquid bandage: must get some! :-)

  19. I love all the levels within this post Laurie! And the replies :) Shine on!
    Val x

  20. Captain Kirk and liquid appendages! lol ;)

  21. Oh sure! probably too many times to remember them! :-)

  22. I too am one who had to let my guard down for love. Well, I say I let my guard down, but my husband would tell you he had to hack his way through a tangled thorny mess to get me to let go and trust in his love! I did know practically straightaway that he was absolutely the one for me but I just didn’t know how to connect that instinct with actually letting myself be so vulnerable. Pretty sure no-one but him could have sorted that out for me. :D

    In day-to-day life I am pretty open and sometimes think I should put some guards up rather than leave them down! But I’m not so good at sharing really personal stuff with other people. I developed a genuinely useful self-protection mechanism as a youngster and it’s so ingrained in me that I don’t know if I’ll ever let it go. And to be honest, I don’t think I’ll ever want to. I think of it as my little core super-shield and without it I don’t think I’d be who I am. Mmm…as always Laurie, you have dug deeper into me than I can do by myself. I’m going to ponder this while I make my first attempt at Life-changing Bread. Seems kind of apt. :D
    http://www.mynewroots.org/site/2013/02/the-life-changing-loaf-of-bread/

    • WarmGinger – I’m glad to know you have a self-protection mechanism in place. Mine is somewhat similar (yet different) to Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak. I don’t have to use it often, but it’s effective when I do.

      THANK YOU so much for the link to the Life-Changing Bread recipe. The photos alone have made me drool! :)

      • It is TOO yummy Laurie! I’ve sliced it up and put it in the freezer, otherwise I’d have scoffed far too much in one sitting (it is very filling). :)

  23. Sadly, I imagine everyone has let their guard down. One side of me, I’m very trusting …. my opposite side is that when I don’t want anyone to know, I tell no one .. no one … no one … thus keeping it solely to self.

    Just want you to know that I noticed you were dropping by during my blogging absence due to the trials and tribulations of packing to move and now unpacking. Many thanks for dropping by!

    • aFrankAngle – I’m in that “balance” space as well: half of me trust anyone and everything; the other half is beyond cautious!

      You’ve made it from Point A to Point B – safe and sound. Best wishes to you and yours in your new geographic location :)

  24. Hi Laurie …my wifi modem has broke so I’m waiting for another in the post . I may be two days late but thank heaven for Starbucks . I think this week I have let my guard down …I have behaved like a monster without my fix …the Internet . So lovely to speak to you …hope to be back to normal next week byyyyyyeee
    Cherry x

    • Cherry – Ohhhhhhhhh, those doggone technical glitches. I’ll be traveling in April to where there’s no internet service. I’ll be having my daily “fix” at Starbucks as well :)

  25. Yes, I have let my shield down. Love, Amy

  26. I think that most of us who blog aren’t typically too cautious by nature. We aren’t exactly keeping our thoughts and ideas to ourselves and we are willing to share ourselves fairly openly. But I’ve recently noted in my personal life I’ve wanted to be a little more cautious with what I share with others. I noted that when my dad was in the hospital and I shared with friends how things were going, it exhausted me to field and navigate the opinions and comments of others. Now to be honest, it was at a time I felt tired and maybe a bit more vulnerable than typical, but it showed me that sometimes it’s probably just better not to be too open if I’m needing to conserve my energy. So I think I do a personal “needs assessment” and I’ll let fatigue levels determine my caution! :-)

    • Three Well Beings – You bring up some excellent “qualifiers” as it relates to personal energy level and determining if we want to use our “fuel” navigating the opinions and comments of others.

      I think it’s a matter of choosing which “cards” to share, while holding the rest of the deck fairly close to our vest :)

  27. I love the star trek analogy, can never go wrong there. There some great comments here on the issue of shields. I unfortunately haven’t put my shields up like in star trek 2 wrath of kahn – all star fleet ships are friendlies. Now I live with “condition yellow alert”.

    I’ve used the super glue fix…with there was one for the heart and mind LOL

  28. Good one, Laurie. . .love the Captain Kirk theme, as well as the heads up on liquid band aid.

  29. The first thing that popped into my mind about letting my guard down, is when I accepted help from my sister after my surgery last year. She flew across the country to be by my side and to care for me when I wasn’t able to care for myself for a while. Even though I’ve never been comfortable in accepting help from others, I was able to willingly embrace her help. It felt very much like being loved by someone. Something I hadn’t allowed in a long while.

  30. My son’s friend used to stitch his wounds back together with Super Glue! It scared me to death but he was a very smart kid and I think this stuff is not dissimilar. I’ll have to give it try. It’s a cinch I can’t keep band-aids on my hands!

  31. Sometimes when I let my guard down bad things happen–other times good things occur.

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