My three-year-old cousin raced around our downstairs yesterday. All joy and determination, he desperately wanted to go as fast as he possibly could around and around the center fireplace in our home.
He sped past stone corners un-childproofed, near wooden beams not padded to protect little heads, and by shelves that wouldn’t budge. The mom in me winced at every circuit. But he laughed and he ran and in all honesty, I don’t think it occurred to him he might fall.
At three you don’t worry about the stone hearth you might crack your head open on, you just worry about going fast and the fun you will have while doing it. You aren’t scared or stuck or stopped. At three, you don’t count the risks, weigh them and wonder if you will survive. You just run.
At three, you are free.
The opposite of fear isn’t courage. The opposite of fear is freedom.
The past year was a difficult one for me.
I got stopped and stuck and at times I wondered if I really was going to survive. I did not live a year that felt free. Instead it felt heavy and hard and bogged down.
I’m pretty sure I’m ready to run again. I’m ready to speed around the fireplace and not worry about the sharp corners. The sharp corners will always be there and I’m stupid to think I can avoid them and still live a life that is free and full of adventure.
So let’s ALL begin to run again. Let’s jump up and take a step forward and another one. And let’s take another one until the moving forward turns from a creep into a walk into a run. Let’s move with joy and with determination in the hope that this year is full of promise and of freedom.
I’m ready. Are you?