What exactly is courage? Is it an act, a feeling, a concept? Is it all that and more? I went searching for a quote to respond to the questions, and I found the following. This quote, is for me. When my senses are screaming, I tend to hide in my safe zone. I am working on changing that,
“Courage is about learning how to function despite the fear, to put aside your instincts to run or give in completely to the anger born from fear. Courage is about using your brain and your heart when every cell of your body is screaming at your to fight or flee – and then following through on what you believe is the right thing to do.”
― Jim Butcher
Some forms of courage are obvious. You watch those classified as a first responder as they go into situations they may not walk away from. Yet they do it willingly as they seek to rescue or protect.
Some forms are for the more adventurous. Those who climb mountains, jump from planes, surf the wildest waves. Actions that leave those who are more spectators wondering why.
Health care workers walk straight into the danger zone of disease and infections. Whether contagious or potentially dangerous due to the state of the patients mental health or if dangerous substances are involved.
Those are only a few of the obvious forms of courage. The ones we applaud as we admire, envy, and sometimes wish to be more like them.
Then there are other forms of courage. The kinds that may never be seen, by the masses, but known only to a few. My late husband had courage.
He had worked in a manufacturing plant most of his life. When our son came along, he wanted better so he changed careers. For twenty years he worked jobs in bakeries. Each closing for various reasons. As he searched for employment it was confirmed he had one major roadblock. He did not have a high school diploma. He also did not read well. In the end, he went into long haul truck driving. One who had only been to three states for as long as I had known him, was now crossing the country repeatedly. Even as he was nervous and at times afraid, he stepped up and did what he had to so as to take care of his family. He never ran into a burning building or faced a bullet, but he was one of the bravest men I knew.
Remembering his courage, makes me feel a sense of shame, when I allow my fears to prevent me from accomplishing things. When I fear going to a social event, of to a place I have never been before. When I have to make a call or attend a meeting and instead I seek somewhere to hide and wait for the time to pass before I emerge. Always angry and ashamed that I had done it yet again.
But we are not given a spirit of fear. That is something we learn over time. I’ve many times seen the posts that we are told 365 times in the Bible to fear not. A reminder for each day of the year. I believe that within the pages, we can find many more ways to find strength and courage. Words and ways that touch us specifically at the moment of reading and studying.
I am working on finding my courage. With each event that has happened since my husband’s passing, I am learning. The pandemic being a strong push toward the goal. When you find yourself severely restricted, you have to find alternatives. The distractions I had were taken away, so now I have all the time in the world to learn and grow and discover the strength I have always had, but had allowed to slip away.
“Courage doesn’t happen when you have all the answers. It happens when you are ready to face the questions you have been avoiding your whole life.”― Shannon L. Alder
“Courage is being scared to death, but saddling up anyway.”
― John Wayne
“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I’ll try again tomorrow.”
― Mary Anne Radmacher
That little voice has been speaking, reminding me there is more to life, than hiding in my safe place. Adventure awaits, its time to gear up and get moving. One does not have to jump from a plane to be brave. One only has to make a step today, toward overcoming what was stopping them yesterday.