A lot of what I've been wondering about has come down to the same question - the question of whether or not to take a chance. I don't like looking back with regret, and around birthday time especially I prefer to look forward, and to remember the good things about the year that's gone by.
I have to notice, though, that when I look back this year, some of the moments that meant the most to me were the times when I took chances. And it makes me look back to those times when I held back from taking a risk, for whatever reason. Fear. Self-doubt. Perhaps because it was the sensible thing to do. Or maybe just because I managed to convince myself of that. Not every chance I took worked out in an ideal way. But how could I regret doing something, really, if in the moment, heart thumping and all, I truly felt alive? That's more than I can say for some of the times when I stayed in my hole, buried in fear.
Today is Wellness Wednesday, a weekly gathering of LGBTQ survivors of violence at CUAV (Community United Against Violence). When I agreed to be a part of the Wellness Circle coordinating this event, I knew that part of the reason the staff had reached out to me was that I am a queer survivor of violence who has sought support through CUAV. CUAV is all about empowering survivors to heal and spread growth and healing throughout communities affected by violence.
So I knew, also, that being a member of the Wellness Circle meant taking a chance each week. It means being out, essentially, as a survivor, standing up each week not just as someone teaching others how to heal, but as someone welcoming other survivors along with me on my own healing journey. It feels like a big risk for me. It feels like more than I would've ever risked before. And it feels great to know that I'm moving forward.
Of course, I can only take one moment at a time. There are reasons we hold on to certain sources of safety, and I don't yet feel ready to risk everything. But I think it's okay that I'm just taking one chance at a time. I don't always know what waits for me after I leap, but someday I'll be sure of my landing.