“Be careful”

“Don’t get hurt”

”I don’t want to see you disappointed.”

“I don’t want to see you heartbroken.” 

No one wants to see the ones they love heart broken. No one wants to be heart broken. Sometimes, though, I think we are so fearful of what might happen that we are afraid to take a leap into something beautiful. What if the joy only lasts for a time. When it ends, it will surely hurt. Whether the pain is a little or a lot mostly depends on us – on how we listen to the cues and follow the signs – on how we choose to walk through the pain.
I haven’t always been careful, and I have gotten hurt, and I have hurt others. Would I have sacrificed the joy if I had known the pain that would come at the end? No. No way. Not a chance.

You know something? The pain of endings often makes the next beginning even more beautiful. Of course, there is always fear and insecurity. There is always that trepidation of stepping out into uncharted territory. There will always be that rush of adrenaline when you embark on a new journey or press in to a new relationship with a friend or a lover. There is always that fear that things will go wrong. But oh, the joy that comes when it doesn’t.

I am desperate to stop living in “careful.” I won’t leave behind wisdom and discernment. I have lived too many years and been hurt too deeply to leave those precious guides behind, but I will not let fear of being hurt or disappointed be the reason I do not live.

So there is a reckless caution in the way I live my life. I live by instincts. Like an animal, I’ve learned to listen for that alarm at the base of my skull that lets me know when there is danger. I listen for the rush of endorphins and the promise of hope when there is joy. I wait for the twisting in my gut and I discern whether that is anticipation of something amazing or the clutching warning of impending  trouble. But there what would seem to some to be a recklessness I will not release. I refuse to over analyze each step. I will not hold the new people in my life accountable for the pains caused by those in my past. I will not let fear of future hypothetical hurt keep me from loving new friends with abandon. I will not let my own past failures prevent me from stepping out into new adventures.

I will not be “careful.” I will be wise, but I will live.

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