I’ve heard a lot of stories of courage lately. I’m not sure if that’s because my loved ones are doing more courageous things, or because I’ve been paying closer attention to it. Probably a combination of both.
Really inspiring stories. Moving forward on a bold idea as a new manager. Accepting a job offer, promotion, or retirement(!). Choosing to go to college out of state when everyone in your hometown does the opposite. Planning a sailing trip across the Pacific with your partner. Packing up your things and making the trip from Boston to Florida to work for Hillary’s campaign. Being honest with someone about you how you feel. Running a marathon. Pursuing a dream of having a child. Moving to Paris, San Francisco, Texas, London. Turning the results of the election into action (aren’t we all working on that right now?!).
The stories of courage I’ve heard have all had some things in common. There’s a moment — or an undercurrent — of panic or regret. Maybe indecision. What was I thinking? Did I make the right choice? Can I turn back?
There’s someone, or something, that pushes us forward. A conversation with a friend. A mentor who says “yes, do it.” A quote. A book. A feeling deep inside. Something tells us to keep going.
It’s a choice. We can choose to be courageous. Or we can choose to roll with the status quo.
As a new mom, courage for me has meant choosing to trust that I am doing things right. Letting go. Not worrying. Turning the voice in my head to positive, instead of negative. Being OK with the way I’m parenting and trusting that W, and our family, will be fine.
My uncle recently wrote that we all have a choice about how we act and how we feel: When you act out of self-awareness, self-acceptance, love, and openness, you are ready to engage with the world as a full contributing human being. The same applies to being a parent.
The (best) thing I’ve noticed about courage? It’s contagious. When recounting a story of courage, people light up. Because we always change — or have a life-altering “aha” moment — when we take on a new challenge.
Hearing others’ stories spurs me to consider what my next courageous venture will be. For now, I’ll just continue to enjoy this motherhood journey.
Some recent highlights…