I've read it often enough in books to know that bravery is not the absence of fear, but rather having enough courage to act in the face of that fear.
I'm trying to live my life here bravely, though I've had a lot to be afraid of. scooting, for one. I would get the heebie jeebies just riding on the scooter at first. every bump we went over made my heart leap. then driving alone... eek. and while I'm still not totally comfortable driving myself on the big roads in heavy traffic, I can relax enough to enjoy riding "shotgun" with someone else. in fact, the other night while riding I had the urge to spread my arms and legs out in the rushing wind and maybe shout something silly like "wheeee!" I obviously didn't because I like my limbs attached thank-you-very-much, but I had the thought.
the truth is, I am scared a lot of the time. I mean, what if I get lost and can't find my way back because I don't speak Chinese? what if I take a turn too tightly and fall off the scooter? what if I try tutoring and I suck at it? what if I can't find a place here I like to run? what if I accidentally order something with shrimp paste in it and go into anaphylactic shock? what if I write a post like this baring my guts and you all think I'm silly?
but there's really only two things you can do with fear. you can wrap it around you like a blanket and hide behind it.
or you can face it.
so I can sit at home and be scared, and do nothing but think of "what if"s. or I can go out and explore. I can drive the scooter and risk making an idiot of myself and try new places and things and always carry my epi-pen. I can be silent. or I can be brave, and hit that little orange button up there marked "publish".
because maybe the worst fear is this: what if I'm so afraid of everything that I don't really live?