"There are only two kinds of people in this world -- those who are alive and those who are afraid." (Rachel Naomi Remen, My Grandfather's Blessings)
Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen's two books (Kitchen Table Wisdom and My Grandfather's Blessings) are two of the most powerful books I've ever read. Dr. Remen works with terminally ill patients and has gleaned wisdom from their experiences and her own (she suffers from Crohn's disease). She conveys these lessons with insight, brevity, clarity, and tenderness. Amazing.
I'd like to think that I've let go of so much that's holding me back... fear, mainly. But when I think of all that I don't do because I'm scared, I think, "I've got a long way to go."
I'm scared of so many things still. Looking foolish. Failing. Succeeding. Not knowing what I want. Knowing what I want and not being able to get it. Knowing what I want, getting it, and then still not being happy. Being alone. Being in crowds... the list goes on and on.
I don't want to die never having fully lived. I feel that clock ticking, yet I still hold myself back.
What if fear weren't in my range of emotions? What if I knew I could do whatever I tried -- or better yet, that I wasn't afraid of how things turned out because I knew I could handle it, whatever the result? Now that would be truly liberating.
What are you going to try this week that you're afraid of?
I'm going to write something new. An essay. Something I haven't done for a long while. Something that may or may not have a future. Either way is okay by me. Because I can handle it.