My and my daughter’s birthdays are only a few weeks apart. When she turned twelve last month I took her to lunch and we asked each other what we wanted for our next year. Nimaya said immediately that she wanted to do something every day that scared her, and we agreed to do just that for the next year.
Every day since, she asks me when I pick her up from school, “So, Mom, what scary thing did you do today?” and then she shares hers. One day she went up a high ladder onto the roof at school, and one day she told the truth to a friend even though she feared it might hurt her feelings. This morning she had acupuncture for the first time and smiled broadly because she was doing her “scary thing” before 9:30 AM. “This is going to be a great day!” she beamed.
Today I am posting my website and this blog. This is my scary thing for the day. I have worked on this site as I myself have been worked on, and worked over. In the past six months a dear relationship ended, my kids went away for the summer, I got sick for months, had a new flare-up of skin cancers, was involved in three separate court cases, and sat long retreats watching what I call “myself” become increasingly unrecognizable. Something in me knew that the time to re-launch into doing healing work with others wouldn’t be ripe until some unprecedented healing happened in my own. Then, for no obvious reason, the website, the blog and my work came into sharp focus about two weeks ago, and the energy to move forward poured out of me. It was what I had been waiting for, except that by the time it happened I wasn’t waiting anymore. There was no anticipation and little attachment. I was just open.
Sharing this blog with you is my scary thing today because I expose my rawness and realness here. I feel the pull to share, to commune, to be seen, and then the fear arises: how will I be received? But as I post this site, passing through the moments of excitement and anxiety, I notice that the fear can’t quite take off in me anymore. I can’t quite work up a good drama of “what if’s” as I step into the next unknown, and the firecracker of fear fizzles and turns out to be kind of a dud—leaving the sky black, pristine and untouched. Beautiful. The scary thing of the day seems to be just the challenge to get out of my own way, to act on what wants to happen next without talking myself out of it. I wonder now if the really scary thing of the day is not to step forward at all. I can’t wait to pick up Nimaya today.
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