Anyway. Realizing this was a revelation for me, because while I couldn't do much to change my strength or athleticism before my next swing, I could deal with the fear. I've talked about fear on this blog before, especially when it comes to writing. Fear likes to keep writers company while they write, trying to convince them that they're going to fail. Whatever. He can hang out with me if he wants, but I'm never going to let him stop me from writing. And once I knew I was dealing with fear in my heels off, I realized I just needed to do it and damn the torpedoes, just like I do with the writing. Fear can swing with me, but he can't stop me from flinging myself into thin air. Next time up on the trapeze, when I heard the command, I exploded off that bar as fast as I physically could -- and apparently it was good enough, because when it was time to try it for real with the catcher, we made both catches. Yay!
If you feel like a wimp or like a person with no courage, don't forget that sometimes, courage feels just exactly like being terrified. The photo above is proof, actually. That's me practicing exploding off the trapeze. In addition to looking very silly indeed, my face also looks scared, doesn't it? But do you see what I'm doing? You're not going to tell me that throwing myself off the trapeze into the air was a cowardly thing to do, are you? In determining whether you're courageous, what matters more, how you feel or what you do?
Reading this made me happy and tearful. Thanks, Kristin!