People often tell me how inspiring it is that I’m “never afraid to be myself.” HA! Yes, it’s a nice sentiment, but it could not be any further from the truth. It’s the sun and I am… well, probably somewhere in another galaxy.
One of my most important goals is to get there, to be able to be myself without fear. As I stand today, in the words of my favorite tiny folk singer, Ani Difranco, “I’m no heroine.” Honestly, y’all.
My passion is to inspire, to contribute to as many people finding that ‘spark’ that sets their soul’s passion ablaze, and I’m flattered that people want to credit me for the inspiration they’ve found in that fearless woman; however, that person is not me.
I also know that fear is a vampire that feeds on energy rather than blood. I know- totally illogical to then be afraid- I’m working on it.
I’m an introvert working in customer service.
I’m a person with male-based trust issues seeing a male therapist.
I’m a gender-queer, bisexual liberal working in a church with a predominately conservative congregation.
I am not fearless. I’ve just learned (yes, the hard way) that allowing the fears to dictate my life, simply, is not living. The anxious seven-year-old within me would love to be allowed to dance through life without having to confront her fears- but then I’m not dancing. If we base our lives on all of our little worries and self-consciousness, we will never inspire anyone else to dance, either. We’ll never be a spark. The spark I do give others, the spark that my fear tells me does not exist or is extinguished by my flaws, is not from fearlessness, but from tirelessly being myself despite the fear. And I’m proud of that. Can I get an amen?!
Listen, I’m not going to lie to you and tell you that I’m aware of this all of the time. In fact, the main reason I’m writing this is to hopefully remind myself in the future, when I’m lost in my fears, that I don’t need to be. Because it happens often. Hell, it took me seven years to shave my head because I was so scared of what people would think of me. Even though I have this little bit of pseudo-wisdom to share, I still have my days that are run by my doubts and fears. Entire weeks, even. But as I remind myself of my passion to inspire, my duty to help others dance extraordinarily through life, those days and weeks become fewer and far between.
This is my challenge to all of us:
Make it a goal to inspire someone every single day: despite the doubts, despite the fears, and despite that craving for yet another comfortably isolated Netflix binge. Inspire others simply by sharing who you are with the world, because believe it or not, that’s all it takes. You, the true you, are so powerful.
Get out there and dance.
Be the spark.