Skip to main content

Be Brave

A few years ago, it came to my attention that a young family member was struggling with anxiety and depression. I was able to share with her a bit of my own struggles, and let her know she wasn't alone.

Bravery - artist Arzu Yontar
A few weeks after our talk, I saw the movie, "Brave." It struck me that the young protagonist, Merida, modeled a great quality. She was indeed brave.

Being brave is not about recklessness. It is not about confidence. It's not about being foolish, or looking for glory in the eyes of others.

Bravery is about doing what is right, even when you are a quivering mess. It's about knowing that things may not turn out the way you expected, but forging ahead anyway. Being brave is standing by the hospital bed while a loved one is dying, and all you really want to do is turn back time. Bravery is standing up to a bully, when your legs are screaming for you to run. Brave is doing what needs to be done even when you're scared and tired and feeling helpless and hopeless.

I sent that young family member a piece of jewelry with the word "brave" engraved on it, to remind her that she was brave.

I'm not feeling too brave right now. My last two jobs were ones I LOVED. I loved the work, the people, the feeling of doing something with meaning. And in both cases, my bosses encouraged me, stood behind me, challenged me, and assured me that I was doing a great job, and that I played an important role in the organization.

Until both of them told me I was no longer of value to the organization. Pack up your stuff and go home.

Just before I was let go from my last job, I passed a plaque on the wall in the office. It designated employees who'd worked there for 10, 15, 20+ years. I thought, "My name is going to be up there one day. I cannot imagine working anywhere else." And within a day or two, I had to scoop up all my personal belongings and haul my butt out of there.

I'm struggling right now with the idea of going into an interview with confidence. I still have no idea what happened in both of these cases - why I lost whatever my bosses had valued in me. How do I know it won't happen with the next job? How can I possibly trust another boss, make friends with co-workers, speak up, when I know there is a very good chance a day will come when I'll be called into the office and told: "You don't have a place here anymore."?

I'm trying to be brave. I'm trying to keep my chin up. I feel like a baseball player whose gotten hit with too many pitches though, and he is skittish about standing in that batter's box. I'm sitting in the dugout, trying not to throw up, because I know my at bat is almost here.

Brave. Be brave.

I am acutely aware that brave women run in my family. For now, though, it's enough to know that I've been brave before and I'll be brave again.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

So close to Jesus

This past Sunday, at Mass, Dear Husband and I had the great good fortune of having a dad, toddler and infant sit next to us in the front pew.

"Good fortune?" you say. Sounds horrible. Kids are so distracting. Put 'em in the nursery.

Nope. We sit up in the front pew, and always invite parents with young kids to come and sit with us. Having raised 5 hyper kids, we can pretty much ignore anything, plus kids do much better when they can see what's going on.

I have to admit, I wanted the toddler to act up a bit so I could whisper to the dad, "I'll watch the baby if you have to take him out."

Instead, we saw something rather remarkable.

Oh, the toddler (not quite 2) was a toddler. He was a bit anty. He wasn't quite sure that he liked seeing his mommy in front, cantoring, where he couldn't get to her. He whined and fussed a bit.

But during the Consecration, his enormous blue eyes locked onto the priest. That baby boy saw Jesus up there. You could just…

Fading Into Friday

It's been a long week. Monday was just ... bad. I ticked off our IT guy at work by opening up one of those d*%$ emails that as soon as you click on it, you think, "Oops." So I trotted over to his office, and he promptly yelled at me. Like I was a child. Or stupid. Or a stupid child.

This was after I found out that every imaginable driving route from my home to office and back home again is under construction. Can't get there from her. Orange barrels. Must as well sleep in the office.
This, combined with the fact that I am now the ONLY person on the planet who stills checks their blind spot before changing lanes, makes me want to quit my job and go live in a yurt.

Our health insurance company sent us these gloom and doom letters that Dear Hubby and I HAD to go online and fill out a health assessment NOW or OUR INSURANCE WOULD BE CANCELLED!!! They were SERIOUS! So, I went online Wednesday. Their system was down for maintenance.

Tried again yesterday. I swear I could n…

If you're ill, don't shy away from God.

There was a time when lepers had to carry bells and loudly announce their presence, so that the "clean" people would have time to seek shelter from them.

Illnesses were blamed in parental sins, or even farther back the family chain. When the AIDS epidemic first struck in the 1980s, they were those who were convinced that this was God's way of dealing out "justice" to homosexuals.

Illness can sometimes seem like an additional cross from God: "Great, I just started a new job, and the kids have different schools this year, and I haven' even thought about a summer vacation and sorry, what's that? Lupus. No. No, you don't understand, I don't have time for that.,,,,

That may be true. YOU don't. But GOD does. For whatever He also int our lives is good and life-giving. Facing any serious illness, chronic or life-threatening, is not something anyone puts on their calendar. It can also make things very difficult to explain to people.

Oh, people …