Godmothers and Tapestries
Once upon a time, there was a girl who didn't know how to tap dance. But she strapped some shoes on her feet, jumped on the coffee table in front of the living room window, and did in anyways. In her mind, she was fabulous. And that was all that mattered.
This girl also wasn't a professionally trained vocalist, or even what most folks would consider a "great" voice. But she sang Wilson Phillips and Shania Twain and Rod Stewart and Michael Bolton with the fervour of Mariah Carey. Even Simon Cowell couldn't have stopped her. (Corny comparisons totally intended).
At one point in her early life, having never taken gymnastics, the girl practiced acrobatics on the sofa. (Maybe this isn't the best example, because she also flipped over the back of the sofa and landed on a table, resulting in several staples in her head).
This same girl decided she wanted a cat. She'd never owned a cat, but she got one anyway. She naively let the cat drink milk, and for weeks it produced nothing but diarrhea in the litterbox. Having not owned a cat, the girl thought this was normal (I know, right? Barf). Not knowing how to clean cat diarrhea out of a litter-box (because what ten year old would?), she figured it out. Chiseling away at it (literally and figuratively), because she loved that shitty kitty.
In grade school, the girl recited a passionate speech to her school over over 300 students. She'd written about the treatment of women overseas, working for the popular Western athletic company, Nike. Knowing that her stance would likely be unpopular amongst her peers, and not knowing how to put a "tasteful" spin on the speech, she did it anyway. Something in her told her that awareness of the issue mattered more than popularity or palatability.
There were moments in the girl's life when she wished someone would come and show her the way. Sometimes, she wished for a fairy godmother to tap her on the head, and tell her what she was supposed to do. Wish as she might, though, that fairy godmother never materialized.
In fact, during many years of adolescence, the girl gave most of her power away, waiting for the noticeably absent patroness. She shielded her heart off, preventing the possibility of hearing it as a result. This was a particularly painful period.
Later in life, this same girl- now a young woman- found herself unexpectedly pregnant with her first child.
Having never been pregnant, she didn't know how she'd cope during labour, or what exactly she'd do as a parent. She didn't know what would become of her professional goals. But she proceeded to give birth to her baby on her bedroom floor, and in the weeks following, mucked through the process of learning how to breastfeed (and then learning how to grieve breastfeeding because it wasn't to be).
What was the common thread running through some of these mundane and magical moments in this girl/young woman's life?
The willingness to go for it despite not "knowing how."
Excitement being enough of a driving force to plow right through the resistance of fear, nerves, or rejection.
Caring more about the call of the Heart than the possibility of rejection or mistakes.
Any time this common thread was dropped, the fabric of life felt much less like an exquisite tapestry, and much more like a scratchy burlap sack.
There is no fairy godmother with a magic wand. At least not in the literal sense. If you're pulled toward a thrilling goal, if your Heart calls for you to create or move into something new, that is the only instruction you need.
Don't wait to "know how," take that first step, like a curious child, and you'll be shown every step of the way after.
Being reasonable and "realistic", so much of the time, is the antidote to living a heart-centred, joyful life. Be unreasonable and imaginative, and move beyond the limits of what your mind thinks it knows.
Be willing to move from a place of comfort into a vast unknown. Consider that everything you thought you already knew is disposable.
Sit with knowing nothing, like a blank slate. Be willing to be fluid and label-less. Move based on what the Heart says as opposed to the mind. Create a tapestry of vibrant colours and unexpected patterns.
Be your own fairy godmother.