Playing It Unsafe

I have done it.  I sent in my law school applications.  I thought I would feel a huge sigh of relief at having it done.  I mean I spent months working on getting everything ready.  Writing, revising, starting from scratch and writing more.   I was finally done with all of it, so the stress should be done too.  It wasn’t.  It seemed to have doubled over night.  Now all of the hard decisions I am not ready to make are quickly approaching their deadline.   I need to have answers that I cannot find.

It is starting to get real, and that is terrifying.  It is no longer a far off thing I hope to do.  It is right up close knocking at my door, and I am hiding under the table pretending not to be home.  You may think that is a metaphor, but no I have actually hide under my table when I didn’t want to answer the door.  I can be a hider when I don’t want to deal with things.  People or decisions.  I burrow my head in the ground and pretend that the world isn’t still moving above me.  I will fly to Africa and rock climb without a second thought, but put me in a confrontation or in charge or making a decision and I am done for.

If you have been reading my blog for any time at all, you will have noticed how adamant I can be about chasing dreams – pulling the life we dream of into our reality.  Now it is time for me to practice what I preach.  I know I cannot get where I want to be in life my staying here comfortable.  I know I need to make the hard decision, take a leap of faith, and not look back.

That isn’t to say that it won’t be hard.  I have gotten very comfortable here.  I like my job,  I like my house, I like my roommates, I like my city, I like being close to my family, and I like my friends.  I finally feel peace about where I am in life, and now I am shaking it all up.  That is hard.  It is hard to walk away from a good thing in hopes of finding a great thing.

Living a full life doesn’t happen by staying where we are comfortable.  It happens when we realize that we want more, that we can do more, and we go chase it.  Dreams are wonderful on paper.  They are wonderful as those thoughts you have right before you drift into sleep.  They are wonderful things that we tell people we hope to do someday.  Living dreams is hard and terrifying and uncertain.  It requires stepping out blind and hoping you don’t get hit by a bus.  What is even more terrifying is being too afraid to ever take a chance on yourself.

Maybe sometimes it’s riskier not to take a risk. Sometimes all you’re guaranteeing is that things will stay the same.” – Danny Wallace

Life moves fast.  The older I get the more I am learning this to be true.  Life moves fast whether or not we play it safe.  One day my life will be over whether or not I chased my dreams.  To me, that is even more terrifying than stepping out of my comfort zone.  Life doesn’t wait for us to silence our fears – it just keeps moving.

Here is to the uncertainty, the unknown, the unsafe – where ever it may take you.

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Photo via Her Paperweight

A Nice Box of Dreams

I am the type of person who is guided by my intuition.  I trust it.  I listen to it.   I snuggle up close to it and let it make my decisions for me.  I see a fact and needs something more.  I need a sign – a feeling.  A need my gut to jump up and say, “Yes, that is it.  That one right there.  That is right.”

I have been bouncing back and forth on law school for so many months now that even I find it annoying.  I am going to go, I am not going to go, I am going to throw my arms up in the air and admit I have no idea what I want.  My intuition hasn’t been that helpful on this one.  I have been too scared to really listen what my intuition was telling me.

Dreams are elusive.  By that I mean that our dreams are hard to define.  It is hard to take your dream and put it in a nice little box.  That would make things easier wouldn’t it?  Just open your nice little box and look through your dreams like old photographs.

Instead we are left chasing the elusive. We chase the feeling that there is something better out there, in we could only touch it. The driving whisper that tells us we can be more tomorrow if we just have the courage to try. If we could only define it.  If we could only put it in a nice little box.

Some days I want to buy horses and an apple orchard, other days I want to storm congress.  Most days I am left feeling like I have no idea what I want.

So I tried a different approach.  I didn’t ask myself if I wanted to go to law school.  I asked myself if I would feel like I gave up my dream if I didn’t go to school. In 10 or 20 years when I looked back on my life, would I regret never going to law school?

My answer shocked me.  I didn’t think that I might regret it, or that there was maybe a chance I would regret it.  My intuition was screaming at me that I would absolutely regret it.  I think it has been screaming at me for a while now, I just didn’t have the courage to listen.  The signs have been there for a while, I just have been fighting them because I am stubborn.

It will not always be easy, in fact I expect it will be very hard.  It will not always be everything I dreamed, in fact it will rarely be close.  But I have been telling people I wanted to be a lawyer since I was 13.  I at least owe it to myself to give it my best shot, come hell or high water.

Sometimes the beauty is in the attempt.

The bravery we had when we took that first step, the grace we had the first time we failed, and the guts we had to pick ourselves back up and try again. There is so much to be lived in the messiness of life, because those are the moments that define who we are. That is why it is important to enjoy the moments that take our breath away; the moments that make our heart beat a little faster.

Can you feel it? The beating of your heart, the thrumming of your veins? Can feel the way your heart aches after it has been broken? What about the fear you feel when you finally find something worth fighting for?

Embrace that life and this moment are incredible gifts, no matter what you may be going through. Embrace that this moment is shaping the rest of your life.

Embrace that you will fail and that life won’t be what you expected it to, but don’t let that stop you from trying.

Embrace the uncertainty, embrace the fear, and embrace the restless stirring of your heart that pulls you to your feet to chase your dreams. Sometimes the beauty is in the attempt.

It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for – and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing. It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool – for love – for your dreams – for the adventure of being alive.  -Oriah Mountain Dreame

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Photo Credit: Christina Re

**** Thanks for stopping by and reading my blog.  Please feel free to leave you comment in the comment section.  Tell me about your dreams, I would love to hear them!