Remember when you were younger and everything was simple and there was no limit to your future? It was easy to think that nothing was going to hurt you with your eyes shut. As we get older though, we get scared now and again of things that we weren’t when we were little. No monsters hiding under the bed any more, no need to sleep with a light on, the fears become different, the older you get. There’s no point of being scared of everything, although no one should be ashamed when they feel afraid, we all do sometimes.
It’s tough to tell someone, especially yourself, not to be scared. There’s always something worse out there, right? It’s normal behaviour to shy away from the things that we’re scared of. Perhaps the more you do something though, the fear is not on your radar as much anymore. When you’re scared, when life is causing you to evaluate what you’re doing and where you’re going, then maybe you’ll find out what you’re really made of. Maybe you take a risk or two? Better to be the person that fucked up, than someone that didn’t even try. There will be days when you can’t see clearly, even with a telescope. Those days when you couldn’t pour piss out of a shoe if the instructions were written on the bottom.That’s okay though, on other days, maybe it’s your job to win the Oscar for the person that most has their shit together.
Chaos, darkness and uncertainty can hover around you when you’re frightened. Maybe we’re scared to try new things because we think we have to get them right, the first time round. Leaving a job and starting a new one? Ending a relationship because you think that you want to be with someone else? Leaving your home and starting fresh somewhere anew?
Being scared can be quite cathartic at times though. Maybe a rule that more of us should have is that if we’re scared of something, we just do it. How brave do you feel when you’re doing things that scare you? A bungee jump, a skydive, anything that takes you out of your comfort zone? You should allow yourself a smile in those moments. Doesn’t everyone deserve to wear a smile sometimes? Each of us are brave, perfect and unique, all at the same time. How cool is that?
It can be scarier if things have to change for you because you had to make the decision because of the actions of someone else. We all make errors of judgement but it’s easy for a mistake to turn into something worse. You don’t want to miss out on the rest of your life out of some misplaced sense of loyalty for someone who badly messed up. Once trust is broken, it’s pretty fucking hard to superglue it back together. If it had happened before, it’s no coincidence now. Coincidence had been left out of your lexicon years ago. You can forgive, but sometimes, forgiving is not forgetting. Now you don’t have two people looking out for you, it’s down to one. Scary as ever, but brave.
Some days are harder than others. One day is like a sky of rainbow sherbet, and then others feel like your life is that side of beef that Sylvester Stallone used as a punching bag in Rocky.
One day though, a chance of something new presented itself. It scared the shit out of me, I hadn’t felt a feeling like it, in what seemed forever. An opportunity for something exciting, a chance to leave some things behind. Some bad, some good. Exciting but scary. Terrifying, really. It felt so cold in that moment, that prostitutes could’ve charged me to blow on my hands and I would have coughed up. Maybe though when you’re afraid of everything though, nothing can hold you back?
It’s a cliche that life is a marathon, not a sprint, but sometimes don’t we want to sprint the marathon? We want immediately to know what comes next, what life has in store for us. Opportunities. Sometimes, all you need though need is a little luck. You can find hope when you’re in the middle of the most hopeless of nightmares. Are you less scared now, will people still try to pull you down? If they want to tear you apart, they better pull hard.
Having someone or something as an anchor holds you in this world and that’s comforting, even if it’s just yourself. You can feel a need to leave sometimes, but then at the same moment, you realise that you have nowhere to go, nowhere to be. Maybe sometimes to speed things up, you need to slow down. Ironic. Until the penny drops, like a copper in a fountain or a well, it’s just one of your wishes, waiting to be fulfilled. One day that chance comes, and you realise that your life can change forever, and for so much the better. You take the opportunity, don’t you?
Being scared kicks in again though and hesitation is too close for comfort. Do you take a chance on what you could have against the security of what you do have? Or perhaps, what you thought you had? Trying to decide, you can drop enough f-bombs to be heard in another hemisphere.
The city had started to darken. Staring out across the impossibly quiet New York night, a decision was made. There was a moment when I was incredibly scared that I’d blow my chance because I was afraid. It was a lifechanger, it would undoubtedly alter the chessboard of a lot of other people’s lives in a big way too. It took a while to decide, fear had reared it’s ugly head again. Was that opportunity still there? It wasn’t impossible, but is was improbable. Thankfully, yes, it was. It’s not goodbye to the people that I’m leaving behind, but perhaps, but some things are better left unsaid. Just for now, not forever. Sometimes you have to break your own rules, sometimes you have to protect yourself.
We might hope or think that wherever we’re going isn’t as bad as where we’ve been. Many cities in the world are beautiful cities. Like many beauties though, they can be temperamental. Like everything else that frightened you when you were small, it’s okay to be scared of opportunities.
There’s so much out there that we’re missing out on. We shouldn’t miss out on anything, we’re here until we’re not. For me, it was a long time being who I wasn’t. Missing something isn’t a feeling that you have to fix, but what if you need or want to fix it? Especially if it’s yourself or something important to you.
I thought we were done with each other. We’re not. I thought that I wouldn’t see you again, but I will. We have history and now we have a future. I don’t have the slightest clue as to what I’m getting myself into, but I think that it’s going to be fun finding out. It’ll be an adventure and I’m not scared any more.
Nothing’s going to hurt me with my eyes shut.