Taking no prisoners. Including herself.

“Uncertainty means stepping into the unknown… Without uncertainty and the unknown, life is just the stale repetition of outworn memories…Relinquish your attachment to the known, step into the unknown, and you will step into the field of all possibilities…” -Deepak Chopra

My cousin had the above quote posted on her Facebook page (wow. You know you’re a child of the internet  when you blog about a FB posting… sigh).

Now, normally I’m not the hugest Deepak fan — (sorry, Oprah) –But for some reason I was struck by this quote. As much as I think of myself as someone who does not cower behind life, I am fascinated with the fear I still find inside me: I’m afraid to be vulnerable, I’m afraid to be uncool, I’m afraid to not care, I’m afraid to care too much.  There are subtle ways I hold myself back from walking naked and blind into that Unknown, whether it be clinging to “the practical”, letting life distract me from what I really want, even hiding behind the loss of my brother, telling myself “I’m still grieving.”

Which is true, but it will always be true. I will always be attending to logistics like paying my bills, or taking out the trash; and I will always carry sadness or grief that ways me down. But my fears convince me that these are good excuses. That because I must take out the trash, I can not write a novel; and because I lost my brother, I should not leave my parents…

…And because I’m scared of being perceived as a 27-year-old dreamer, I must not waste my life chasing after some “authentic” way of living that I can’t even yet define.

In an effort to face these fears, and others that might rear their intimidating heads,  I am setting a new New Year’s resolution (in time for the Vietnamese New Year): “Embrace uncertainty, trust thyself.”

Sing it with me, kids — mantra style!

This is my Year of No Fear, where for the next 365 days I will make choices I might otherwise talk myself out of; I will be driven not by rationality but by intuition; I will do something because it scares me.

Now, I’m not talking about being reckless, or skydiving, or putting my head inside a lion’s mouth — that’s child’s play. I’m talking about committing this year to looking deeply inside and really listening to what I find: even if it scares the bejesus out of me.

And in that vein: I’m going back to Vietnam. The decision nearly made itself one day, everything falling into place until I couldn’t ignore that it was the right thing to do. And so I’m following it’s lead. What I’ll ultimately be doing there, and what what will follow in 2009? That’s a matter of uncertainly.

§552 · January 18, 2009 · PROJECTS, This Modern Life · Tags: , , · [Print]

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