Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Back To Daring Greatly

   I'm back. I took Brene's class on The Gifts of Imperfection and I learned, but now I'm back to the big mama book. I found a friend to read with, I have the book as an audible file, and I'm starting a section in my journal for Daring Greatly.

                                                                      Teddy Roosevelt
“It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better.  The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself for a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat.”
    Here are some preliminary questions. I answered them 18 months ago and now I'm seeing with clearer eyes.

1- I define vulnerability as a state of being; open, able to risk embarrassment, genuine, slow to be defensive about my story, and more ready to listen and learn. 

2- I thought in the past that vulnerability meant being in a weak position. Now I see the expansiveness of it. By that I mean the opposite of contracting to keep yourself out of a exposed place. Pulling in to protect myself is giving up the freedom to feel the spectrum of emotions. I was so devastated to realize that "we can't selectively numb emotion. Numb the dark and you numb the light." Pow! I feel that right between the eyes.

3- My family story mirrored the war stories of countless others. We felt fear and scarcity many generations back. Behind the good memories, shadows of poverty and shame leak through. Getting more was a theme I felt from my parents. More education, more money, more security, these ideas were deeply implanted in my head.

4- I saw my father save 60% of his weekly income to keep us safe. I saw my mother go to great lengths to make us look presentable. They felt vulnerable coming from a war-torn country and starting over in their 40's with a new language. However, this model wasn't all negative. They showed great courage to come to America.
    I have a legacy of courage. For that I am grateful. I have witnessed fear and disconnection but at the same time I have witnessed overcoming that fear for the greater goal of connection to a stronger family and even more important, a stronger tie to God.

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