Thursday, October 18, 2012

Practicing Courage



All Rights Reserved. My daughter, ever so fearless.
I’ve been very fortunate to take a five week e-course from multi-media artist/author, Kelly Rae Roberts. Her work inspires us, reminds us, to speak our truth and to find the beauty in all things. All-ways.  You can read more in these posts here and here.

This is the last Flying E-Course Kelly Rae will run and I feel privileged to have been part of it, to have been part of an incredible community of beautiful, encouraging, brave women. 

Despite it all being online, we truly have created community, a homespun e-family of like-minded creative people who gently push one another to have courage.

I’ve joined up with a sub-group of sister flyers to participate in a blog circle. On the third Thursday of each month (today!), our circle of 13 women will each post on a particular topic.It's kind of like a game of "Tag! You're it!" The first blogger writes her post, sharing a hyperlink to her sister blogger at the bottom. This goes on and on until the circle is complete. If you click on all the hyperlinks (please do!), you should experience an array of creative, inspiring blogs and posts!

Today’s topic is courage.

(Remember: at the bottom of our posts will be a link to another sister-blogger and you’re invited to check her post out.)

If you’ve visited this blog much, you know I can be a real scaredy cat. Heights freak me out, I feel claustrophobic in crowds, and I really, really, really don’t like bananas.

Pretty minor stuff, I know. 

Finding the courage to press against my comfy, self-imposed boundaries isn’t. It’s hard. It’s scary. 

For years, I’ve limited myself in many ways. I stopped dreaming. And dreaming big? Fuggedaboutit.  There are physical, emotional, educational barriers I firmly looped around my heart.

Yet, in the last few years, I’ve tried creating a new set of rules.  One that opens my heart up a bit more.

And I have. I’ve risked failure, risked disappointment, risked looking like a fool, risked not being enough…

And (mostly) magic has happened. I’ve met incredibly special new people. 

All Rights Reserved. Through reaching out to another mom (of my daughter's bff in the US), we became BFFs, too. And I was so, so lucky to then be introduced to another new person through her.  She, too, is now one of my besties. How lucky am I?
 Some have become my dearest friends ever. 

All Rights Reserved. All of us together. How blessed we were to have found three families that became so close. It really all happened because of kismet, and because I made an effort to reach out. Something I usually found nearly impossible. But I did. And I have forever friends because of it.

I have tackled many of my physical limitations (I’m not perfect and still have a way to go, but who doesn’t?). I’m writing. I’m meeting people.  Ticking off goals one by one.

I’m starting to dream. 

I’m starting to believe in myself.  To listen to the kinder part of me who is kind to everyone else.

I’m beginning to practice courage by listening to that gentle, quiet part of me who knows I am deserving and important. That part who knows I do matter. Knows I am enough. Just the way I am.

So, I will continue to straighten the stubborn spine my great-grandmother gave me and trod along. Perhaps slowly at times. Perhaps not how or when anyone else would choose. 

We have to find our own bumpy course.  No straight lines. Not for this girl.

I’ll get there in the end. I will do the best I can, when I can.  To me: that’s being brave.


This month, I’m honored to be linked-up with my sister flyer, the very talented photographer, Gail Haile, of New York. Please follow this hyperlink to her gorgeous page, Haile Fine Photography, and read her lovely post about practicing courage. 

30 comments:

  1. Becky I love that you have started to dream, believe in yourself and started to practice courage. This will open up a world of opportunities and possibilities for you. You displayed incredible courageous by writing this blog post. You are a true inspiration show us how it can be done.

    I so relate to one of your biggest fears which is also mine, that of heights. I hope to be courageous enough one day to break through that one.

    Suzanne xo

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    1. Hi Suzanne,
      Thank you for your kind message. I am hopeful that, as you said, opportunities and new possibilities will open up. It's been interesting actually watching this start to happen. I believe this course has really helped me be brave enough to not immediately dismiss my own ideas. :)

      Ah, the whole heights thing. I don't know why it scares me; in fact, it's really less a heights issue and more of a falling issue for me. Thing is: they go hand in hand, don't they! lol Here's to both of us pushing through our fears!

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  2. Love this...."I’ve risked failure, risked disappointment, risked looking like a fool, risked not being enough…

    And (mostly) magic has happened." so true!

    Gail

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    1. :)

      Thank you, Gail. It really is quite something to witness what can happen when we take risks. :-) They're usually not as insurmountable as they seem.

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  3. There is so much of this that I love. "I'm starting to believe in myself. To listen to the kinder part of me who is kind to everyone else" This made me tear up because in my own artwork I often struggle with perfectionism. I am becoming better at learning that the imperfections are what makes it great... what makes me great.

    Sometimes it takes the most courage to truly delve deep into our souls an face our own internal fears. I raise my mug of hot chocolate to you in a toast... Here is to remain courageous along your journey of believing and dreaming of all the wonderful possibilities you will one day achieve!! Hip Hip Hooray!

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    1. Ohhh, perfectionism. God. That could be a whole host of blogs, couldn't it? Oh, I get it!

      I love that you wrote: "I am becoming better at learning that the imperfections are what makes it great... what makes me great." How beautiful is that?!

      I raise my cup of tea to you, as well, Jennifer! (Ohh, how I want some hot chocolate now! LOL)

      Thank you for your kindness! :)

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  4. Yay, Becky! What a beautiful post...so full of inspiration and hope. You are on a great path and I believe you will bring others along with you. I love that you are learning to be kind to yourself. I'm having to learn that as well. Oh, and FYI...I wouldn't say I abhor them, but I really, really don't like bananas, either!

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    1. Oh, Janice, thanks for such encouraging and kind words. I felt quite honored and touched that you wrote I'm on a great path and you think others will come along for the ride, too. Thank you for that!

      Why is it so hard to be kind to ourselves? It's a hard one for me.

      Can I just say how HAPPY I am to know of another person who doesn't like bananas?! YEESSS! LOL! The only other person I know besides us is one of my cousins!!! ;-) Banana haters unite! lol

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  5. Brings "happy" tears to my eyes Beck.. :)

    Love ya .. Dad

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    1. Thanks, daddio!:-)

      We've had so many talks around this, haven't we? :)

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  6. i love the way you put your emotions out there and say it so beautifully. Yes, I teared up a bit too - I'm glad you are believing in yourself and dreaming again. And - I think everytime I come to your comments, I see one from you dad - that makes me tear up too! he is so supportive of you!!!! becky in burma - you are living the courageous and adventurous life!

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    1. Hi Vickie!

      Thank you for your sweet and thoughtful words. Yes, my dad is very supportive. :) It makes me very happy - and I feel very grateful - that he takes the time to read my blog and comment! It means a great deal to me.

      :) Thank you! And I'm happy we're on the flying ecourse together! :)

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  7. I would have never guessed you were not courageous. You live in another country! You go girl! I love it, reach out and take that courage by the arm, go with it!
    Have fun!

    Chandra

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    1. Aw, Chandra. Thank you! lol I suppose that you're right: it is a bit courageous to live in another country! It's funny: I did feel it took courage to move here, but once we arrived, I think I've discredited the fact that it is courageous to actually BE here. Thank you for that. ;)

      Love the imagery of taking courage by the arm. :)

      Thanks, Chandra!!

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  8. Ah! So true. Magic happens when we take those risks. Thank you for writing such a beautiful post.

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    1. :)
      Thanks, Jean!!!

      Here's to all the magic!

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  9. Becky, Wonderful post! I loved how you are "practicing courage by listening to that gentle quiet part of me". Perfect!

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    1. Sue, thank you!! Very thoughtful of you to leave a comment. Thank you!

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  10. yes, LOVE this, becky! we're learning to fly, holding hands, and getting ready to take off.

    i haven't been active and didn't know about today's topic until after everyone had posted their blogs. i will make my round slowly but i find i've only time to connect with a select few and i'm so glad you're one of them <3

    i think pushing our boundaries is one of the hardest things we will ever do but like you KNOW, when we do, mostly magic happens! magic. happens. IT DOES. today i talked with someone, in person, on a level i hadn't yet before and before long we both realized we KNEW it. i just love surrounding myself with people who are living their dreams and believing in the magic all around. much love!! xoxo

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    1. Valeri,
      Thank you! I am really excited that you were able to connect with a particular person on a level you hadn't before. How amazing that the two of you were able to come to the same place: KNOWING that by taking risks, by pushing ourselves, that life begins to shift. It's like fault lines. We shake things us. Some of those fears crumble. New ways appear. That, too, has its own scary element: but still, it's better than being in a self-imposed cage. :-) (As you know.)

      I still have a lot of those cages around me...but...I'll keep poking at them.

      Also, I feel absolutely honored that you've been able to come to my page + read the blog posts. Truly. I am also very, very happy to have found yours!!!! :)

      Thanks, Valeri!

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  11. I sooooooooooooooooo identified with all the things you wrote about. I think I hit my stride in self discovery about the same time you did. You lead by example...yes,you do...I like that. June Maddox, following your lead.

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    1. Hi June. ;)
      Thank you for your very kind words. :-) I always feel blessed when you leave a comment here!

      :)

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  12. Wonderful post! It's all about the journey, right? And it sounds like you are on a great adventure. Thanks for sharing your courage and giving us courage too. I especially love how you say you are listening to the kinder, gentler, quiet part of you who recognizes your worth.

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    1. Hi Christina,
      Thank you for taking the time to stop by the blog + leave a comment. :) Yes, I agree: it's all about the journey.

      Thank you for that reminder!!

      Have a beautiful weekend!

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  13. Becky, I've so enjoyed reading your posts...always filled with depth. They are words that speak to our souls and sometimes step on my toes (in a really good way!!). Your post to Tamarisk Saunders-Davies on "I Am Enough" spoke volumes to me. Thank you!! I had posted a few things on my blog after we started our 5 week course with Kelly Rae...then got kind of discouraged. OK, girl...you inspired me to start up again!

    Ruth
    http://amemoryforever.weebly.com/

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    1. Ruth,
      I'm so sorry it has taken ages for me to reply to you. Very strangely, blogger put your comment in my spam box (bad Blogger!) and I only just saw it tonight, on Halloween!

      I am very, very happy to hear that you're feeling inspired to write on your blog again. :) I can't wait to hear what you've written.

      Thank you for your very kind words. ;)

      Much love,
      Becky

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  14. Becky, you are so brave! Becky, you are beautiful just the way you are! I admire mostly the light and kindness that flows freely from your divine heart. I am proud of you. I love you.
    Mom

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  15. What a wonderful post Becky, I really love your writing.
    I think reaching out to other people is one of the hardest things to do and requires such courage, well done for putting yourself out there and taking the risk.
    From reading previous posts of yours I think that actually you do lots of very hard things bravely and so Becky in Burma a huge hug to you and I look forward to more inspirational writing and adventures from you.

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    1. Hi Judith,

      Thank you for your kindness and the compliments. I am grateful and happy that you enjoy the writing.

      I agree that reaching out to people is sometimes really difficult. Somehow it seems safer doing that through writing, though.

      Thank you again, Judith, for your kind words and especially for stopping by! :)

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