courage || big & small
Courage is often seen as this sudden feeling we have to pick up like a shield before going into battle or a brief moment in which we collect ourselves in the middle of a difficult season. I get this old western image of girding our 5-layered skirts & pulling our boots on by the straps before plunging through the tumultuous river with a set jaw and furrowed brow. Maybe childlike images of summiting mountains and sleighing dragons come to mind, or perhaps you think of that scene from your favorite movie where the hero triumphantly overcomes the antagonist and is celebrated by all of her friends and family. While this courage can feel inspiring, it can also feel unobtainable or even unnecessary when our lives feel monotonous with consistent tasks of work emails, homework piles, chasing around the messy toddler or meal planning to the grocery budget.
Here’s the truth though—courage is needed daily for things big and small. Raging rivers or stretching budgets.
Courage covers a multitude of moments, emotions, and choices we encounter each day. Courage is defined as “mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty.” Fear looks different for everyone. Fear can be watching your kid walk into their first day of high school or speaking up in Friday’s staff meeting. It can take over your internal thinking as well as your external actions. But it takes daily courage to choose moving through your fears.
What am I talking about? For starters, it can look like thinking of yourself with more positivity than you usually do, changing that inner voice of insecurity & loving who you are. Maybe it’s finding a counselor to sort through some heavy things you’ve been carrying around or signing up for that yoga class because even though you can’t touch your toes, you’ve always wanted to try it. Courage is maintaining patience to keep teaching your 1-year-old to not throw her food across the table when you’d rather join her just to express your irritation. Courage is digging deep within you and pulling out love when it may be easier to hate, joy when it could be easier to be angry, or gratitude when it’s easier to focus on what we lack.
You are all full of courage, dear friends. Just as your lives, whether adventurous or monotonous, are full of worth, joy, and of light.