Bravery

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Brave. That’s what she called me.

Me? Brave? But I’m afraid of everything.

Fear is like my shadow. My heart races while my thoughts spin and I sigh. Oh it’s just you again. My fears come in all shapes and sizes but behind those masks are one and the same.  Anxiety, depression, stress…all coming from that deep elemental place where fear reigns.

When I look back though, when I play the movie of the last few years, I watch myself experiencing constant fear and moving toward it. I haven’t let it stand in my way. There I am moving from place to place almost never finding my comfort zone. And that’s me living halfway around the world in a strange new country. If I saw anyone else doing these things, surely I would describe them as very brave. Especially if I had insight into how deeply fearful they were to begin with.

And so I’m left with this: I am Brave.

Bravery is not being fearless. It is being overwhelmed by fear and not backing down. We can only be brave when we are afraid.

So, embrace your fear. Look it right in the eye and thank it for making you a warrior.

 

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10 comments

  1. “No Mud, No Lotus”.

    By now you know that I have always (since I first encountered your work) believed in you , believed in your journeys (past, present, future). Your ability to recognize your fears (founded, unfounded) and set your course through the middle of them has always (always) impressed me. It also made you (makes you) a more compelling human and one whom I am always sure will indeed #Thrive.
    We need our fears (of all kinds). And they need us. Neither can survive without the other.
    Perhaps the best part of your fears (founded and unfounded) is your intimacy with them. Your awareness or mindfulness of them. It is incredibly empowering to have that connection (even symbiotic relationship” with them.
    Like the passengers on the Max train in my previous (clumsy) analogy, your fears are fellow travellers. Some of them get off at other stops, some leave with you, lurking in your shadow (but not the other way around!) and you learn to live with each other.
    You are a talented writer, and a good soul.

    You’ve got this.

    Onward (with fear and bravery both).

    -G-

    PS: If you think parentheticals are twitchy, try an exercise where you use one in every (single) sentence.
    PPS: The word “fear” in your word cloud is smaller than it used to be.

    • I adore parentheticals. I feel like I could live (happily) inside them. They were almost incorporated (almost) into one of my first tattoos. Ended up with ellipses… Love those too (of course). The fear in my life cloud is smaller than it used to be too…

      Thank you a billion times Grove.

  2. Amen, sister! The sayings “Be fearless” and “Have no fear” and all the others drive me crazy! We all have our own version and amount of fear, and although there may be some who have no fear, I think in no way should that be the goal. How crazy to think we should be fearless! It’s like saying we should never experience sadness or anger or any other emotion. The goal is to honor our emotions, let them have their say without letting them strangle us, and then do what is ours to do. Being brave is one of the best things ever, and you sure are rocking it!!!

    • I’m not the only one who hated the “No Fear” logo?? Thank goodness. It just never made any sense to me. Fearlessness (in my opinion) is basically stupidity. If you have your wits about you, you are damn fearful of things in this life. And that keeps us safer and on our toes. I admire those who acknowledge and accept fear as necessary. I admire even more those who grow with it. And I admire you… So you clearly embody these traits Kelly. Thank you for your words of understanding.

  3. Rachael the Warrior, it does have a certain ring to it. You describe me so well, minus the bravery. Of course I couldn’t do what you’ve done or are doing. I don’t think I was ever that “Adventurous” or “In love” or “Confident” or “Brave”, ya Little Girl, you are all of that and more. I’m proud of you “Little Tweedy Bird”
    I love you. Ask Rob if he misses me.
    Love,
    Auntie

    • If I were to list the people in my life who were (are) brave and in being brave, taught me to be as well YOU would be on that list. From a very young age I sensed your strength and fortitude. I truly believe that you could and would do whatever it is that I’m “doing”. Life hands each of us our own serving of battles and challenges. Would I have been adventurous for the sake of just moving around a lot? Nope. But I fell in love with a pilot. Would I be confident (when I feel the opposite) if I hadn’t witnessed the women who raised me being confident and strong at every turn? No. Would I know how to make time for laughter and fun if my Auntie hadn’t taken time to be silly with me, holding sleepovers that included fruit loops and Nick-at Nite? Probably not. If you admire who I am in any way, I hope you can turn that mirror back to yourself and see that I am part of you.

      (Rob misses you every day and so do I)


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