Sunday, March 24, 2013

Be Bold

When Bethany was home sick last week, we spent an entire day watching Say Yes to the Dress Atlanta. Mostly I was astounded by how many people some brides bring with them to shop for a wedding gown, and how mean those friends and family members can be! I know this stuff is kind of staged, but really, you couldn't pay me to tell my beautiful daughter that she has too much junk in the trunk to wear the dress she's fallen in love with. That kind of comment lingers in your memory forever.

But, they weren't all horrible and nasty.

One bride-to-be was particularly self-conscious about a recent weight gain. She was accustomed to being much more slender, but was taking medications that had caused her to put on some weight. In tears, she stood before her loved ones, modeling a dress she wanted badly. But she was so unhappy with her body and thought she was too big to wear the dress. That's when her brother*  piped up and said the sweetest thing to her.

Be bold.

He told her that she had always been bold when making decisions in her life, she looked great in the dress, and to just go with her heart and get the dress. Be bold, he said. Just be bold.

I couldn't help but tear up a little. How lucky that woman is to have someone who cares about her enough to encourage her and remind her of the strong individual that she is. Sometimes we all need to hear that. Maybe he just wanted her to hurry up and pick a dress already so he could get the hell out of that store. But I'm choosing to believe that he spoke out of love and admiration.

Who doesn't need to be bold? To dig deep within, summon every ounce of courage and resolution, and take a chance? Mostly in life, we coast by. We could navigate with our eyes closed; waking up, making breakfast, getting dressed, driving the kids to school, and on and on it goes. But what kind of life is it if we never shake things up? If we simply continue to do the same things over and over again, nothing ever changes. We don't grow. We wait for things to happen instead of making them happen.

Doing something new is scary. Letting ourselves be vulnerable is terrifying. It's true that the outcomes of new ventures are uncertain, but that's what makes them exciting and potentially very fulfilling. Sometimes we fail. Sometimes we make a fool of our ourselves. A life full of failures and embarrassments is better than a life full of un-realized dreams and chances that were never taken. Because side by side with those failures and embarrassments, are sure to be some of the most satisfying moments and accomplishments of your life.

Be bold.

Take a chance. Live your dreams. Don't let fear rule your life.

Leave a comment and share about a time when you were bold!

*He could have been her brother-in-law, cousin, uncle, or friend...but I'll just simplify and assume he was her brother.


Elizabeth Parker said...

I really like that he told her that!

This week, I just signed up to do speed dating, which I'm really nervous about. But the price went from $25 to $10 with a discount, and I told myself I had to go for it, plus the restaurant location is like 3 miles from me. We'll see how it turns out!

Jenn said...

Some how I didn't know we both have a daughter named Bethany. My Bethany is 25 though. :)

Hope yours is feeling better.