A ship is safe in harbor, but that’s not what ships are for.

~  William G.T. Shedd

Sometimes we unwittingly become vulnerable.  Like getting caught in a thunderstorm with no cover, we suddenly realize we are in a potentially dangerous situation without any form of protection.  It sends a jolt of fear through the body and we scramble to return to a safe place.

What about the times when we knowingly and intentionally strip ourselves of our comfortable safety suits and become vulnerable on purpose?  Are we crazy?
I am feeling very exposed lately in more than one way, and I have no one to blame for that but me.  I put myself there – on purpose.  I am uncomfortable.  Not unhappy – just off balance.  And I’m pretty scared, even though the fear is more of an exciting adrenaline rush than a pang of dread or pain.  I’ve chosen to be here, willingly and optimistically.  I was ready to leave my comfortable spot and stretch my legs a little.  

When you walk to the edge of all the light you have and take that first step into the darkness of the unknown, you must believe that one of two things will happen.  There will be something solid for you to stand upon or you will be taught to fly.

~  Patrick Overton, The leaning tree: [poems]

I love this quote.  Walking to the edge of my light... yes.  That’s it.  Everything I know and see is behind me as I walk forward into the exciting fear of the unknown, where I can see absolutely nothing.  I’m going in blind, stumbling and feeling my way, inch by inch, with gigantic expectations – not for a particular outcome, but for the joy of the journey and for the inevitable growth that will occur.  
My training this summer has been completely unpredictable and very difficult.  I never ever know what my experience will be when I lace up my shoes and hit the road.  But, despite feeling wrecked and shaken at times, I’ve never ever regretted one single mile – not one.  My journey lies not just in a solitary run, but in an entire collection of them.  The joy is in the process. 
And so I want to live my life.
Step by step… no matter how tired I am at the end… no matter how hurt I may feel… I’m confident that there will be fields of sunflowers and serene rolling hills along the way that will take my breath away and remind me of the ridiculous joy of living and loving.  
I can’t see what’s ahead.  No fortune teller, no magic 8 ball.  Just Love and an open heart.  
It’s dark at sea.  But only at night, and eventually the sun will rise. 

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