Pop Quiz: when is the last time you learned to walk again?
This is not a trick question. (Well, maybe it’s slightly tricky, but there’s no wrong answer.)
Step. Step. Fall. Stand Up. Step. Fall. Stand Up. Fall.
Stand up. Fall. Stand up. Step. Step. Step.
(Perhaps be embraced wildly and celebrated!)
Most of us can’t remember the first time we learned to walk, but life gives us other chances to feel that blend of excited, called and fearful…
What’s prompting me to write about this now is the recent, rare visit of my eleven-month-old granddaughter Sula Rain. Sula is doing that hold-on-to-one-finger thing, or, better yet, when she can, is grasping one finger of each of my hands (or the fingers of whoever else might be available).
Sula was relentless in her loops from the kitchen down the hallway through the living room, through the dining room and back to the kitchen and down the hallway and back through the….as those little feet stepped, one in front of the other, sometimes one on top of the other.
Nothing (maybe besides her mama’s breast) made her as happy as this pursuit. Little made her as unhappy as stopping. Truth is, she was mostly doing it by herself. But she felt better holding on. So when that finger or those fingers were withdrawn, Ms. Sula Rain promptly plopped down on the floor and let her displeasure be known with that wonderfully big voice of hers.
The day before she left, Sula took three steps in a row on her own (three different times!) from me to her mama’s outstretched arms. They don’t make any technology, to my knowledge, to measure the delight on her face and in her being, or to fathom our feelings of delight, being part of the remarkable moment of her crossing that space on her own.
Sula is my teacher as I learn to walk again…
In the process of launching my first novel this year, there is a space from here to there that I have never walked. My steps are tentative and I keep falling. Sometimes, I just sit here, having no idea how to walk this walk.
Yesterday, in a big (metaphorical) heap on the floor, I felt as if I would never learn what I needed to know, let alone smoothly cross the space from here to There.
Then I thought of that chunky little Sula.
Sula Rain does not dwell on what she has not mastered, does not obsess about all those steps she has yet to take. She does not lament the learning curve ahead. Plopped on the floor, she may be momentarily miffed, but she is not thinking disparaging thoughts about her failure to forge ahead.
In fact, nothing is going to daunt Sula–not even her own fits–no matter how many times she falls, no matter how many times those big fingers slide out of reach. She will get up as soon as another finger shows up. Before we know it, she will be step, step, stepping on her own without waiting for any supporting digits!
When is the last time you learned to walk again?
Is there some new territory you are traversing or wanting to traverse?
Is some horizon beckoning you? Are you heading into it? Or are you reluctant to venture there?
As before, there is no wrong answer. I would love to know your experience! Please scroll down to the comments below and share!
(Note: I moderate all comments, so do not be surprised if your comment does not post immediately, it will soon!)
You may not be on the journey of birthing a book, but most of us are birthing something new in our lives at any given moment–be it a new awareness, deeper patience, a tad more wisdom…
I wish you countless blessings on your journey. It is an honor to be walking with you.
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