So, as it turns out, Gandalf the Gray wasn’t holding a staff at all. Instead my book and ideas for an emotional resilience workshop for kids were greeted with open arms. Alright, hard to imagine the dragon-ending wizard being a ‘hugger,’ so let’s just say the librarian who actually did listen to my ideas was very welcoming and receptive. It was more than I could have hoped for (or better put, just what I had hoped for). As soon as I left, shutting those great wooden library doors behind me, I felt an immense amount of confidence flow through me. When a ‘win’ such as that happens for me, I feel totally present in the moment. Everything that follows afterward (for at least a little while) seems to gain color, sound, and all experience is crisper.
With my anxieties abated, I walked right over to the bike shop across the way, spoke with the salesman there with all ease, my attention fully in the moment of what I was doing. What I was doing was extending my happiness in the moment by examining and talking about ‘fat bikes!’ I knew I wasn’t buying one, but it always feels good to fantasize.
As I left the bike shop, I started to come around a bit from my ‘win’ and wouldn’t you know it…a familiar little ‘gremlin’ was waiting by my car for me, arms crossed, looking at me with a smirk. I knew what he was thinking (probably because he wasn’t by the car at all, but rattling around in my brain). “What are you going to do for these workshops you just got yourself into?” If a win in the present moment is a potent cure for my anxiety and doubts, my wandering mind looking for the next hurdle I will need to jump over is the sure catalyst to grow and nurture a fresh set of anxieties and fears.
I slowly begin to feel the itchy restlessness that I felt before I walked into the library. The only knowledge that comforts me is that every time I walk through an ominous, unknown set of doors, my confidence in who I am and my ability to stay present lasts longer. At the same time, I find the gremlins that show up to remind me there are more sets of unknowns to come, and that I may fail are fewer in number. I only count the one at my car door. There were at least three in my back seat before I ever even tried to walk into that library. I don’t believe it’s the ‘wins’ that weaken their numbers, and diminishes my doubts about the future. It’s the fact that I trust myself to try.