My friend Pamela Madsen shared this image on my Facebook page this morning and it literally jumped out at me since it is what I have been doing a lot of lately. I joke that I don’t skydive or bungee jump, except emotionally, taking all kinds of leaps of faith into the free flight of the unknown. It wasn’t always the case as (believe it or not), I was a timid “deer caught in the headlights” when it came to making decisions, second guessing, not wanting to make the wrong choice and then deal with the repercussions.
I think it came in part from an experience I had at around 11 or 12 when I was at Sears in my home town of Willingboro, NJ. My mother and I had gone there because I was going to do some modeling in the courtyard. It was summer time and as is so in retail, they were focusing on the Fall fashion line. Before I donned the plaid shorts and jacket they offered me, I was wearing t-shirt, shorts and sandals. Standing at the top of the escalator, I put my foot on the first step and found myself skidding down the steps, since the sandals didn’t have treads on them. It felt like water skiing on one foot! Ever since then (even now, more than 40 years later), I hesitate when at the top of an escalator, waiting for ‘the one with my name on it’, to show up and then hold on tightly to the railing as we take the ride downward.
Another image from the recesses of my kid-mind was this one:
The first time I went off the high dive, I felt like this. I climbed the ladder, stood on the edge and looked down, heart pounding and scared shitless (not literally, thank goodness:) and knew I couldn’t back down since there was a line of kids behind me. I had no choice but to take the plunge. The silly thing was that by that point in my life, I was an accomplished swimmer, so I knew that no matter how deep down I went, I would pop back up and be safe. Jumping in like that in my life now too.
These days, the leaps look like asking for what I want in all areas of my life, putting my work out there in the world, trusting in the Highest Good outcome, regardless of appearance at the time, daring to dream and then transform my dream into reality, not always taking the familiar route, peeling off the layers to reveal a vulnerability that I would not have before, honoring my instincts and intuition.
I know many brave souls who are willing to take that first step, leap, hop, jump into uncertain waters and they continue to inspire me.
Enjoying the ride on the way to splashdown!
http://youtu.be/UF5V2PEujqs If I Were Brave by Jana Stanfield (I know I have used this song several times in this column, but it seemed fitting here:)