So, you’d normally see a guest post in this space here, midweek. Sometimes, that doesn’t work out. When your blog’s page authority registers at just 54, and your favorite baseball team is 1-1 with 16 runs scored (and 16 runs allowed), the universe asks you to sit down and take a number.
No gripes, though.
It’s in those spaces of forced improvisation that revolutionary ideas gain traction, or at least decent facsimiles of such. My friend Deb (of Deb Runs) poses a weekly challenge, Wednesday Word. Of all days, it falls on Wednesday, in the midst of the A to Z Challenge.
What are the chances Deb’s word would begin with E today?
By my calculations, it’s roughly 1 in 23,091,432. Again, I’ll work with the forced improv. Today, then, for the letter E … I present to you your guide to Everyday Bravery.
Want to see my credentials? They’re not impressive.
That’s easy, right?
Right now I’m the cheese-whiz motivational speaker in the Holiday Inn. “You can be brave. You can too! Yes, you …” Want to see my credentials? They’re not impressive. They’re life-earned, not granted with prestige. No Purple Hearts, no George Awards.
I’ll get no invitations to give a TED Talk or even a FRED Talk on my brand of bravery.
The struggle is real, though, and it’s not exclusively mine. Bravery’s the main ingredient, yes, for facing a day of dialysis or chemo. Bravery plays a prominent role when you’re waiting for a doctor’s diagnosis or college acceptance letter.
Bravery’s an asset when your team loses a championship.
It’s especially so to show up for work when that loss comes on a last-second shot. Argue if you must about degrees of bravery necessary, but they all come from the same jar. Some just require an extra scoop.
Be brave. If you’re not brave, pretend. No one can tell the difference.
Goalkeepers on my teams know this quote. It’s my last rites given when circumstance hurls them between the pipes, armed only with Mickey Mouse gloves, a stinky but brightly colored mesh vest, and this folksy advice. It works, though.
Who among us isn’t drop-kicked into goalkeeper duty?
I mean this metaphorically – although, as any parent in that stage off toddler parenthood when your crawling army tank wants to traverse every staircase and clear every bookcase, you’ve developed some workable skill naturally.
Get up and do it again.
Sometimes, bravery is cramming yourself into a cave crevice and lying real still and trying not to piss yourself so you won’t get roasted.
Maybe no one is. In that case, the display of bravery – or decent rendition of – serves your purpose only. Chances are, though, you’re not doing this in a vacuum. My kids watch, my teams watch. They notice bravery or lack thereof.
Bravery to believe in me, and bravery to believe in them.
That’s where the everyday stuff comes in. Bravery isn’t just taking a swipe at the dragon with your sword. Sometimes, bravery is cramming yourself into a cave crevice and lying real still and trying not to piss yourself so you won’t get roasted.
Then it’s crawling out of the crevice and trying to take the fire-breathing bastard down by the sneak attack.
So, bravery, I guess, right? Try it on. Today, even.