This is my favorite picture of my precious girl–because it sums up her life, her personality, her way of being, in one perfectly captured moment.
Arms spread wide, smile splitting her face in two, ready to take on the world and welcome everything it brings her, no matter what.
No. Matter. What.
It’s the same look she had hurtling off a diving board last summer, no fear on her gorgeous face, as my heart leaped in my throat and I thought, “No! She’s too little!” She proved me wrong of course, landing with a resounding splash and swimming fast and neatly to the side where she shouted with glee, “See Mommy! Told you I could do it!”
It’s also the look she had bouncing in the waves off the coast of eastern North Carolina, my dad and I both watching carefully but her desire to be at one with the ocean greater than our desire to keep her safely on the sand.
She lives out loud. Wings on her feet. Fiercely independent and determined.
On my best days, I know this is exactly how I want her to be. On my very best days, I know this is how I want to be. How I can be. She runs circles around me, though, at this living out loud, and even as she terrifies me with her full-speed-ahead ways, I know there is so much to learn from how she embraces this lovely life.
Someone has reminded me this week of how important it is to live in such a way. How much you miss if you don’t. How when we let our guardedness, our hedging our bets, make the final decision, we often miss out on the very things we’re craving most–be it a new job, a new relationship, a new place to live, a new dream, a new idea….
Whatever it is, there’s no getting it without taking a chance. Engaging a certain amount of risk. Trusting the process of giving ourselves to something new and potentially wonderful.
And then…sometimes, as Meister Eckhart once said (or wrote?), “…suddenly you know: It’s time to start something new and trust the magic of new beginnings.”
God, it can be terrifying. The newness. The trusting of that magic. Butterflies exploding in your chest. Heart pounding in your throat. All the possibility for joy and beauty existing right alongside the possibility that it won’t work out at all.
Whatever it is.
All I can tell you is that sometimes, you just have to believe it is worth the ride…no matter what. You have to totally give yourself to the journey…no matter what. You have to leap…no matter what.
And believe, as I do (even if I sometimes forget it…far too often I forget it) that somehow, it’ll be okay. It might even make you more of who you’re meant to be.
I’ve never regretted summoning the nerve (even if it takes me a while) to take the chance. But man-oh-man…have I regretted NOT taking the chance.
And you never know…if you’re really lucky and the stars align…gold.
But even if not? Even if gold is somewhere else to be found?
Well…you’ll never get there at all without having taken the chance in the first place.