“Sometimes what you fear the most is the very thing that will set you free.” Robert Tew
So here’s the thing- I am not a risk taker.
I would consider myself an adventurer, but definitely not a risk taker.
I like to go with the flow, travel without a set agenda, and appreciate the pleasant surprises that life directs my way. However, when it comes to planning life, I want my ducks in a row. I like a level of predictability and certainty. As the oldest child, I think this is often the general mentality. I was/am an overachiever, people-pleaser, work-my-tail-off-to-improve person.
Then I became a mother and my world was thrown for a loop. A wonderful loop, mind you, but a loop none-the-less. And with the birth of my second child, I decided to take a risk and walk towards my fears to help me grow.
I have decided to quit my full-time job as a Foster Care Social Work Supervisor to be home with my children and focus on building my photography career. Almost eleven years of how I have defined myself is ingrained in that job. And here I am, leaving it. No guaranteed income; no guarantee that people will hire me; no set daily routine. Granted, I have taken steps to plan for this, but pulling the trigger and moving forward were scary, mind-boggling, outside-of-my-comfort-zone, steps.
When I look at what I am leaving behind, I reflect back on the children and families that I have not only impacted, but more importantly, have impacted me. I have cried with parents who have said good-bye to children they have loved and cared for, as they help those children return to their biological family. I have cried tears of joy at adoption proceedings where families become whole. I have witnessed children who were severely neglected and abused develop into strong, resilient, thriving children with the help of unconditional love, and relentless work to help them overcome the challenges they were handed. I have been inspired and invigorated by colleagues that pour their heart, time, effort, and love into the work we do. I am grateful for the experiences I have been blessed to have; for the challenges I have faced; for the growth I have made in the past ten years.
It’s with trepidation that I take a leap of faith- a big risk for this gal who likes everything in place- and I leave behind what I know; what is secure; what is familiar. And I jump into this next phase of my life, as a growing photographer and a stay at home mother of two. This year had a rough start personally; I told myself that “acceptance” and “patience” were words I needed to focus on. Acceptance for what I could not control and patience that I would eventually get to where I need to be. I have also realized this year that I need to walk towards the fear. So often I feel halted by something because I am afraid of failing or it simply scares me. In these circumstances, I repeat to myself, “walk towards the fear” because I need to start getting out of my own way.
So here I am, walking towards the fear; facing the stirring questions in my head: Who am I if I am not a social worker? Am I good enough? What if I regret this decision? Well, I’m sure I will stumble and fall a bunch along the way, but as I move my life in a new direction, I am also finding peace and excitement for the opportunities that lie ahead.
“Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.” George Addair
Cheers to the next step; the next adventure; to taking a leap and learning to fly.