Every year I choose a word or a phrase to use as a short of guidepost and inspiration for the upcoming 365 days.
In the past my focus has been on love and truth. One year I did fun and last year I chose a phrase – I don’t know- to help me with uncertainty.
This year I choose trust. And as soon as I choose the word, an opportunity to practice it was presented to me.
Two, actually. I just LOVE that!
I was in the mall, one frequented by the elderly.( You know the type ) When a slightly unkempt man started to make a fuss. Talking to himself in distress ” This is JUST great!” he says, throwing his hands up in the air. I kept walking, ignoring him because the dude seems a little unhinged. Something was off.
Well of course dude approaches me. They always do. I’m a magnet for weirdos. ” Excuse me?!” Fuck. I keep walking but raise an eyebrow at him and off he goes! Into a long spiel about how he’s called the police numerous times and is getting no help and he’s lost this and he’s lost that and he really needs help. Its a bullshit, cockeyed story. Dude is trying to scam me for money. I cut straight to the chase ” You want money?” Yeah, he nods at me. “Not gonna happen. The bus driver might let you on for free if you ask nicely though” and off I go. Trusting in my wisdom and not falling for his nonsense, I alerted security and they called the cops, so yay for that!
Now, I’m used to trusting my wisdom when it comes to situations like that. I have plenty of practice! ( The stories I could tell … ) What I’m not skilled at is trusting in the opposite direction. Trusting that other humans mean well.
Enter opportunity numero dos!
I’m sitting at the bus station, minding my business when the older lady beside me strikes up a conversation. We start yapping. Soon we’re fast friends, older versions of drunk girls in bathroom bars. Ha ha!
Her bus comes and she reaches into her bag and pulls out another bag, filled with obviously homemade doughnuts. ” Take these. I made them this morning and tucked them in my bag to give to someone along the way” she says to me kindly. I graciously accept, touched by sweetness and pop them in my own bag. Off she goes. Her name was Olga.
Now OLD Lael, would have tossed that bag of treats straight in the garbage. How would she know if they were safe to eat or not, right? Yeah, Olga seemed lovely and kind but could I really be sure? Nope.
Here’s the thing though: We can NEVER really be sure. About anything. Or anyone. Nothing is in our control. Nothing is certain. Now was I going to toss the doughnuts OR use this neat encounter to practice my 2019 word?
Being the bad ass soul warrior that I am, I leapt at the chance to trust. Also, doughnuts!
They were delicious and perfectly safe. I didn’t die. I didn’t get food poisoning. I enjoyed a treat from a new friend and felt the shackles loosen a bit from around my heart.
So yes, I engaged in an act of trust with another human but more importantly, I engaged in an act of trust with MYSELF.
I trusted that I was a good judge of character in that moment. I trusted my instincts and I trusted my intellect. I trusted my HEART.
I aim to do more of that in 2019. I’m just so curious to see where else this word takes me.
How about you? Do you chose a word for the new year? Do tell?!