What we hold closest to our heart and experience in life makes us who we are, and while it’s sometimes hard to see, it’s often felt through energy and the way we connect with others: belief, pain, history, passion, hope, loss. . . there is so much written on our hearts that makes us beautiful, complex, and unique, and each piece is necessary for creating a wholeness where light and darkness are safe to co-exist. While I’ve been dented and bruised from time-to-time, I am unbreakable, and with each lesson my heart has grown wiser and stronger; with each loss the cracks have been filled with more hope and bigger dreams. I have a deeper desire for love, compassion, and understanding because the events that could have broken me were used to transform me.
I’m currently at a professional crossroad where change is exciting and full of potential but requires faith and courage, and it’s bringing-out fear and insecurity that’s taking me on an emotional pendulum ride. I feel strong and intimidated, powerful and fragile, capable and lost, hopeful and scared. As I sit with tear-stained cheeks and wonder why my heart hurts so much while I logically know everything will be okay, I give myself permission to sit with my feelings – not to transform the unhappiness into happiness or to fix whatever is wrong, but to understand. I am the collection of all of my feelings, and they are all welcome. Through this act of self-acceptance I was able to identify the most powerful voice inside of me, and I’m able to see more clearly why this emotional battle is my current normal: I’m afraid of holding myself back, of not taking the leap of faith necessary to potentially achieve and experience life-long hopes and dreams. I don’t want to stay small and play-it-safe when every part of my spirit wants to soar. The fire inside me isn’t youthfully naive like it once was, instead it comes from a core-deep need to experience fullness and maximize my potential because I have something special to offer the world, and there is only one me.
I know what it’s like to settle, to be taken advantage of, to be unappreciated, to be unloved, and to be used. Now it’s time to shine. For the longest time I’ve fought against the presence of fear in my life, believing that hope, faith, and love were only possible without fear. I no longer believe that. There can be happiness and sadness in the same moment, hope with lingering heaviness, and the decision to be brave and move forward with fear and uncertainty in your back pocket. So I’m choosing to embrace fear as motivation to be courageous. We have the choice to harness any energy or emotion for positive or negative, and I’m no longer going to allow the fear of loss, regret, change, failing, or heartache to be reasons to re-evaluate my dreams or alter how I go after my biggest passions.
I love this lyric from Fly by Maddie & Tae: “We’ve come this far, don’t you be scared now, ‘Cause you can learn to fly on the way down.”
If we stay grounded there’s less chance of falling, but zero chance of flying, so I’m taking a leap of faith in love and career right now, heart-open with big dreams, enthusiasm, and a little shadow of fear following me on my journey. As I give my heart to another, my psyche periodically reminds me of the risk of getting hurt, but my heart hasn’t recovered from abuse and neglect to be hidden or restricted, so I’ll love freely and fully, with faith that when I fall I’ll be caught. We have one life to live and tomorrow isn’t promised, so I’m going to give my all to each day with gratitude for the life I’m blessed to live, compassion for others, passion for my dreams, and my heart of my sleeve.
“This is not the end of me, this is the beginning.” – Christina Perri