First and foremost, welcome back to all of my Patio Mingling readers—I’m sorry it has taken me so long to get back to you! I have decided to dust off my personal blog and once again begin telling stories of my life and all of the unbelievable characters that are part of it each day (yes, my teenagers, I’m talking about you). To start things off, I am going to begin posting a weekly challenge every Monday–and this week my challenge to you is to “Be Brave.”
Over the weekend I was visiting my 83 year-old mother who was telling me the most wonderful story about how she got her first teaching job in Mishawaka, IN. She delighted in the details—telling me exactly how she got to Mishawaka, the interview with the school’s superintendent and even how she found her first place to live. I asked her why she decided to leave her hometown (a place where she would someday return to raise her own family) in pursuit of a career that she could have easily started in the town where she was raised and where most of her family still lived. “Because everyone wants a chance to make it on their own,” she said without hesitation. “I was brave when I was young.”
Really? Brave when she was young? From everything I have witnessed as the daughter to this amazing woman, she has been brave every day of my 43 years—a quiet courage that I can’t quite put into words, but I hope exists inside of me. But, at this moment in her life, leaving the comforts of her home and family must seem like an impossible feat. She smiled as she continued with her story saying, “I can’t imagine how I ever did something like that.”
Is bravery really wasted on the young? Does our youth and naivety allow us to do things our older, wiser selves would never consider doing—and, does this mean we may be missing out on some of the ‘good stuff’? After all, had my mom not gone to Mishawaka, she may have never met my dad –a moment that obviously changed her life forever.
My challenge to you this week is to do something brave—something that makes your stomach churn with excitement and that will most certainly be the beginning of a story that ends with you saying, “I can’t imagine how I ever did something like that.”