Life is about moments. There are some terrible ones. We all remember those. Some of those are individual losses and some of those we share as a nation such as the one we remember today.
There are some amazing ones. Most of those are very personal moments. Some we mark with special occassions called birthdays and anniversaries and holidays.
There are private triumphs that nobody really knows about. Moments of accomplishments that are personal when we do something small that means nothing to most people. Moments where we finish something we started long ago. Moments when we remember that life is worth living. Moments when someone says something so small that means nothing to them but means the world to us. I have had three of those moment in the last 12 hours.
The first is silly. I played my first softball game. This is something I started and walked away from when I was 8. I was a rather sensative child. This has changed so much. Okay, not really considering as I sit here writing this, I have tears in my eyes. I am the ultimate softy. It sucks. I wish I was tough. I would love to be a hard woman with no feelings. That just isn't who I am. I went out and played softball when I was a kid and the coach yelled at me so I quit. I didn't like being yelled at. I still don't. When a teammate yelled at me lastnight I had to fight back the urge to tell him off in the middle of the field, that or cry. (Probably tell him off.) The important part is, I played two games last night and I finished. I didn't play well. I did get on base (on a throwing error but who cares?). I got an RBI. I scored a run. I rock!
This is me in the dugout!
After the game I sent my brother a text just to tell him that I played and I didn't cry and although I suck I finished. He surprised me by saying, "Well, at least you are out there playing!". My brother and I don't always agree on things. He hunts, I hate guns. He is conservative. I am more liberal. He is stubborn. I am stubborn. He is right. I am always right. You can see where this would cause problems. There was more to our conversation, brother-sister banter but that simple pat on the back by my brother who was the popular kid and athlete meant a lot.
When I woke up this morning I found the sweetest text message on my phone from a friend. I don't know why and I don't know what brought it on but whatever made my friend say those sweet things, I appreciate the love. I don't deserve all that praise however that moment made me feel very special.
What I have learned in my life is that sometimes good people hurt you when they don't even try and don't really mean to. You can hate them and live in the hate or you can forgive them and let go of it. I believe forgiving sets you free.
What I have also learned is that in order to truly live you must force yourself to do things that make you uncomfortable. For me that is going out and playing softball. Truthfully, I hate being bad at things. I don't like sucking at anything. I have never felt so much like a girl as I do when I catch and throw. My arms hurt this morning and I literally am afraid of the softball. I see it coming at me and use my shin to block it instead of my glove to catch it. I have the bruises to prove it. It makes me uncomfortable. I learn things about myself being uncomfortable. We all do.
Finally, what I have learned is that somewhere inside there is a fear. I have it whenever I have to go down a hill on my bike. I just have to talk myself into it. The fear of falling. We all fall down. If you let the fear get the best of you, if you let the fear win, you close yourself up in a box and you stop living. I did that. I did that for years. I quit trying. I stopped living. I won't do that again. I lost 10 years of my life because I was afraid of getting hurt again. I don't like being hurt. I don't like being in pain. I guard my heart like a bank guards it's money. Nobody has the combo and I don't know if anyone ever will but I don't want to stop trying to let someone in just because good people fail me sometimes. Good people come with their own fear, pain, and baggage.
I woke up thinking about this scripture and it seems perfect to stop here: