Sometimes I am overwhelmed by a coalescence of happenings which all point (or shout if I try ignoring them for a while) in one direction. Today I look out over my world and am blasted by the vista of courage.
My favourite thought about courage, and I'm sorry I can't attribute this (can anyone else?), is that a fearless person has no opportunity to be courageous: courage is feeling the fear and still doing what needs to be done (slaying the monster/ removing the spider/ exhibiting the painting/ getting the haircut). So, the more scared you feel, the braver you can be. Hurrah!
I'd like to share with you some of the examples which appear on my horizon.
A friend has just met up with an old friend. Not so scary, you might think. But this woman was part of a group my friend had felt rejected by many years ago. Yes - now it's scary.
Another friend is taking on a teaching job for the first time; moving out of the student space and standing in the spotlight as the one everyone else turns to for help. She's definitely scared.
One of my best friends, who deserves a break more than anyone else I know, has been sending her children's books to publisher after publisher, despite many rejection letters (and silences). I know that one's scary.
An artist friend staggered when a commissioned piece fell on stony ground, but is working on another commission now, with fresh faith.
I have organised a local exhibition of my newest artwork (more on that in a post coming to you soon) at a time when my town will be swarming with art lovers and artists. Big scary exposure!
My daughter, Ickle Pickle, is standing, with support, despite some bumps and scares and bruises.
Which brings me to that famous Goethe quote:
Maybe boldness is another form of courage. It certainly needs courage.
So, did these bold and courageous actions attract power and magic, even genius?
My first friend discovered that she had misunderstood her old circle of friends. They had not rejected her; they had actually missed her when she left. Now she is beginning to find some of them and re-weave the web of friendship with them. It is a magical and powerful process.
My second friend is still nervous about being in the teaching role, but is buoyed by all the people telling her how much they have benefited from her help over the years - a kind of genius, right?
My hopeful writer friend took me out to lunch yesterday to celebrate her first publishing deal. After all that magical dreaming, the genius won through and it actually happened.
My artist friend has been swamped by people eager to applaud the genius, power and magic in her paintings and to express delight about their commissioned works from her.
My exhibition, while still safely in the future, is also lurking in my studio, magically tempting me away from these hypnotic keys and suggesting that maybe I, too, can pour power into art.
And we know, don't we, that Ickle Pickle will one day run into my arms and climb a tree and, also that she will fall many times, but try and try and try. Her example is breathtaking; her method so simple:
Step One - Begin trying to do something that is way beyond your abilities.
Step Two - Keep trying.
Step Three - Now you can do it.
We can all do it, whatever it is.
Do let me know what it is you can do and where your courage lies so we can all inspire one another.