The greatest mistake you can make in life is to be continually fearing you will make one.
– Elbert Hubbard
This is me.
When I was younger, a boy growing up in rural Montana, I had little to no real joy. I simply existed, in fear, from one day to the next. I had little to look forward to and little to enjoy, particularly with anyone else.
I still live in fear. Fear of not just making a mistake (or many) but also fear of the unknown and unforeseen Bad Luck. It’s hit before and there’s no reason to think it won’t hit again. Despite my inner belief that fear and anxiety draw negativities towards them with the same prevalence that joy and positivity attract good things, I sometimes can’t shake the worry, the fear.
I’ve never played to win, really, only playing Not To Lose. It’s a shitty way to do this Life thing.
The first time I ever actually played to win, throwing myself completely into something, was hockey. Hell, for a long time that was the only thing.
Then I met her. And I didn’t just throw myself, I cascaded headlong into the abyss. I rocketed towards her with everything I had and I’ve never looked back.
No. Not once. Not ever.
And it’s been hard. And it’s been miserable at times. It’s been a constant barrage of shit at times.
And I’ve never looked back.
Sure, there’s been fear. But it’s the same silly fear that is simply nameless, faceless anxiety that sits in the back of your brain and says ridiculous things. Like the ghost of Elvis in the bathroom mirror, taunting you while you rinse your face, it’s back there.
But it’s not present, front and centre, and she is.
And THEY are. Four of ’em.
The fear is there with them especially, but the joy is louder. The joy is there and even though there are times that I have to dig it out with a pickaxe, I can find it.
I frequently tell them that I know I’ve made mistakes and I’ll make many more. So will they. Living in fear of them is, in and of itself, a mistake. Let’s just live. Find some joy.