Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Far and wide

Sunrise leaving Arkansas
Have you ever heard the saying “you get two families- the one you are given & the one you choose”? A member of my “chosen family” just did something very brave: she accepted an amazing job near the beach, which is her favorite place in the world. Here’s where the brave part comes in… she moved 19 hours from anyone she knows. I rode with her as she set off on her new adventure, with the clouds thinning & the temperature rising as we neared the coast.

What a difference a day makes... first Florida sunrise...
Prior to her departure, I heard people tell her repeatedly how brave she was & I heard her tell another good friend that she was a little scared. Her very wise friend pointed out something I hope I will always remember. She said, “Being brave doesn’t mean you can’t be scared… it just means that you are scared but do it anyway.”

I'm not sure what makes me happier, the palm tree or that beautiful sky.
A couple of years ago, this adventurous friend’s funny, smart, independent child announced, rather matter-of-factly that she would be going to college 17 hours away, where (you guessed it…) she knew no one. Not much doubt where she got that brave streak. I admire each of their willingness to make such huge life-changing decisions- it takes more self-trust than I consider myself capable of.  Each of their willingness to follow their dreams reminds me of this Diane Ackerman quote:
A heart-shaped seashell from the first trip to the beach. How cool is that?
“I don’t want to get to the end of life & find that I lived just the length of it. I want to have lived the width of it as well.”
 So here's to all of you following your dreams... far and wide!

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