Sometimes we don’t know where we’re headed. Actually, most of the time. This is especially hard if you’re one of those people who likes to know where they’re going-all of the time. Like me.
I’m not much of a risk taker. I don’t like high places, ledges, surprises, or the unknown. I like to have a plan. I like lists, planners, recipes and getting things done. But every once in awhile I surprise myself, and take a step. Sometimes they are baby steps, sometimes, mamabear steps, and sometimes I just jump without thinking or looking. Those are the scary ones to me, and more often than not I end up regretting something about them. Especially when it involves over-indulgence. But lately I’ve taken a few mamabear steps that have actually come out ok.
I was talking with a new friend the other day, and we were discussing what it’s like to be our age and feel like we’re getting to the place where change is really quite scary, especially if it involves careers, money and doing something that other people (younger ones) are more skilled at, more experienced at, or maybe just more courageous. We agreed that sometimes ‘putting ourselves out there’ is essential to open the door of life just a tinge wider, giving us a new view and opening up the possibility that ‘there’ will respond. And the crazy thing is, it usually does.
This has happened to me a couple of times over the last few years, giving me the confidence to now keep the door propped open. Just a tinge. For some of us just taking the jump into parenthood is the opening. For some, finishing school, a project, taking a trip or creating something just for the sake of creativity. Like a blog.
What I’ve learned is that Lao Tzu’s famous quote, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step” is absolutely true. That step can be small, medium, or large, but it’s a step all the same. And usually, if you’re on firm ground to begin with, the step comes out ok. And then another one can follow right after it. If the ground beneath you is muddy, crumbly, or slippery, that step might take longer or require some thought, but it still can be done. What I’m still learning is that I can trust myself to take the step, and to know that there are so many people in my life that will hold my hand if I need help to get down the path.