How am I brave?
What a very introspective question. I find it brave to draw from personal experiences as source material on display for other’s consumption in any of my posts. Challenges I’ve overcome when faced with something beyond, new, different, or in adversity. Boldness in self-reflective, written response.
I guess I’ll start by sharing a few of the more daring activities I’ve done in life. Whether on land, in sea, or air. Water endeavors are my most favorite though.
- Jumping off cliffs and white water rafting the Grand Canyon.
- Wilderness survival adventures. Attesting to only taking a shoe box worth of items into the forest and building quinzees to guard against the winter elements.
- Recreational sports like hiking, scuba diving, zip lining, rappelling, horseback riding, kayaking, and surfing.
- Traveling on long, arduous treks.
- Facing audaciously strange, random, peculiar situations where only after the fact one can even begin to laugh about.
- Arriving at destinations alone.
- Being in places where I knew not one person, then having made many friends.
- Living in another country.
- Living without electricity or running water.
- I’ve eaten some less traditional foods and some very questionable health wise.
I’ve survived many storms as well. Storms of life too. So the question is not only a look back in tribute of bravery to my physical and mental endurance. But a very emotional one.
These past 2 years I took time to read diaries and journals I took out of storage which I’ve kept since childhood.
Wow have I been through a lot. Even more in the first decade of my life than what some some people go through in a lifetime.
Entries that depict tragic losses and painful circumstances, and impact on me. Memories that can only be accompanied with cathartic cries and boxes of Kleenex. I look back and think about the things I’ve been through and how hard I was on myself too.
Yet I was brave in the vulnerabilities. It’s bravery to realize them. Confronting fears and insecurities during times of grievance and despair. It’s bravery to admit to being broken and pressing on. It’s taken humility to cherish the difficulties as means that say I’m maturing, growing, and ways I’ve been strong. The wonder in choosing or wanting the wrong things. Speaking up when I’ve known what’s right. Speaking up when I’ve been wrong.
I think there’s a lot of bravery in turning experiences of joys and sorrows into sharable stories, whether through various art and music media.
Maybe ones that would make for a good book.
Did I mention that I love the fastest, steepest, and craziest of roller coasters, both wooden and steel?
How as kids we used to secure our Nash skateboards to the back of our BMX and Mongoose bikes then speed race down hills? How about about the time as a little girl I went door to door in icy snow selling homemade cookies and candies in pretty bow tied cellophane bags at Christmas?
I must say though, as confession, as brave as I can be, I’m not brave enough to eat out at a sit-down restaurant alone or go see a movie by myself. That’s where my braveness has actually drawn a line.