" A couple of hundred years ago, Benjamin Franklin shared with the world the secret of his success. Never leave that till tomorrow, he said, which you can do today. This is the man who discovered electricity. You think more people would listen to what he had to say. I don't know why we put things off, but if I had to guess, I'd have to say it has a lot to do with fear. Fear of failure, fear of rejection, sometimes the fear is just of making a decision, because what if you're wrong? What if you're making a mistake you can't undo? The early bird catches the worm. A stitch in time saves nine. He who hesitates is lost. We can't pretend we hadn't been told. We've all heard the proverbs, heard the philosophers, heard our grandparents warning us about wasted time, heard the damn poets urging us to seize the day. Still sometimes we have to see for ourselves. We have to make our own mistakes. We have to learn our own lessons. We have to sweep today's possibility under tomorrow's rug until we can't anymore. Until we finally understand for ourselves what Benjamin Franklin really meant. That knowing is better than wondering, that waking is better than sleeping, and even the biggest failure, even the worst, beat the hell out of never trying." -- Grey's Anatomy
I must have rewritten this post a dozen times before realizing that everything I want to say can be summarized in few words. As I embrace the new year I take several life lessons with me. First, I've learned that it is OK to be afraid. However, I've discovered the true value in facing it. Because "even the biggest failure beats the hell out of never trying". I've also learned that it is never too late. There are plenty of mantras that preach we should leave the past in the past. But what good comes from that? Isn't that the same as avoidance? And won't avoidance eventually come back to kick us in the ass? I believe everything happens for a reason and that past experiences help guide us towards our fate in the tomorrow. It is never too late to be who we want to be and to love the ones we can't live without-- Because there is no time limit on neither life nor love. The past few months were nothing as I had expected them to be. I had not expected to wave red flags, nor did I expect to wave them until it was almost too late. However, surrendering was not in the playing cards for me. I did not expect to break someone's heart along the way, nor had I expected to regret it more than anything. But sometimes one must lose everything to find something. For me that something is what is worth holding on to.
Several months, and a new year, later, I feel like I am cautiously invincible. Questions were answered, values were challenged and passions were brought back to the surface. I graduated, earning a 4.0 this semester, took risks, and challenged myself in ways I never thought were possible. I've learned that I have a lot of love to give, and that I should embrace and revel in it, rather than turn away. I caught a red flag only to wave it in victory. I refuse to hold back any longer. I refuse to let fear override a victorious life filled with love and success. I've learned how to identify such warning flags to prevent them from recurring and I've learned that I have a lot to look forward to. I am eager to see what the future holds, as I cautiously proceed with one foot in front of the other.
This year, I will not let fear hold me back. I will take chances, offer the love I have to give until it is reciprocated, and I will work diligently towards creating the reality of the future I dream. I will hold on to what matters most, while letting go of what no longer does.
So, here's to a new year-- another chance to take that risk and get it right.