I have never been one to turn away from things that scare me. I am part adrenaline junkie, part warrior and also part crazy at times. I have had family members and others state how brave I am. These statements actually make me stop. I have never seen anything that I have done as particularly brave. I have simply done what I needed to do.
Two particular statements of my bravery stand out to me.
After my miscarriage, as I sat in the shock of grief, James said to me that I was brave. I had been the one who had started the two of us on the journey of infertility treatments. I didn’t see what I had done as brave. I simply did not want to have regrets for not trying. Yes, the journey did not end up where we wanted and it was long and exhausting. I suppose there was the choice of doing nothing but that would have lead us to unanswered questions. I was both fearful of not going on the journey and fearful of going on it. I was brave enough to face the unknown.
On the day I gave my notice as a grief counselor, I received an email from a senior manager stating how brave it was for me to be leaving. The email shocked me at first. My mother was dying, I had known for a few years that I needed to do something different and that I needed a break from grief counseling to care for myself. I didn’t see what I was doing as brave. Yes, I was fearful as I had no job to go to. However, it was a necessity. It was survival.
Much of being brave is about survival.
Most stories about bravery come down to facing a situation that scares you.
- It is brave to be the person who is afraid of crowds and gives a public speech.
- It is brave to struggle with getting out of bed in the morning but getting dressed and making it to work.
- It is brave to be the person who is afraid of heights but gets on the ferris wheel.
- It is brave to face the emotions and fears of pain and loss without the aid of substances that numb.
- It is brave to think you can’t do something and do it anyway.
Bravery is all around us. The average person doesn’t wear a medal to show what they have gone through. As a result, I believe that individuals do not see what they do as being brave. Anytime you face your fear, you are showing that you are brave.
I’ve seen bravery of all forms. I see it daily.
I’m learning to accept the fact that I am brave. Without being brave, we simply exist and do not live.
Today I challenge you to think about what you do that is brave.