A long time ago, either late in high school or early in college, I came to realize that on days that I felt like I was on top of the world, the world did its best to knock me down a few pegs. At that time I could not understand why; I just knew that I reached a point in which I began to avoid feeling my best because I was not willing to fight for that feeling.
Sounds kind of stupid in a way…not wanting to fight to be at an elevated emotional state…to see the world from a grand position in life. But, there I was, fighting to not feel elated.
There was a lot going on my life back then….my parents had just separated and were heading to divorce, I was getting ready for (or already in) college…either way I was not doing well academically. I had this powerful idea of driving my car around my home state, searching for nature stories that needed to be brought to the public’s attention.
I laugh at this thought today…since I was an engineering student at the time and had never written an article or anything for that matter which was not a class requirement or assigned project. Researching and writing these assignments were my favorite part of school. Had I been a little smarter, I would have picked up on that and picked my major accordingly. But, again…that top of the world feeling and not having the courage to fight to stay there.
After a couple of years of spinning my wheels, I came across an advertisement for a baseball writing position for a startup magazine in a Prodigy bulletin board. I applied, sent a test article to them about the career of Robin Yount, who had just retired after 20 seasons with the Milwaukee Brewers. About two weeks later I receive a phone call from the magazine’s founder/chief editor welcoming me to Sports Map! Now that was a great feeling! I was jumping up and down and every which way! But, again, he who stands tall must fight the gravity of the world. And fight I did not.
My run at Sports Map lasted about 4 years. I had written 16 columns (it was a quarterly magazine), all of which received positive feedback, but the magazine itself did not catch on enough for the founder to keep it going, so that was that. I resigned myself to defeat, and focused on my very young IT career for a long period of time, never really writing except for work or business related needs.
Flash forward about 8 years. While on a camping trip with friends, we were talking about some of the things we had each done that maybe no one had really known about. I mentioned my Sports Map gig. To my complete surprise, one of my friends remembered reading my column religiously. My heart leapt into my throat as the all too familiar feeling of resisting that climb to the world became almost overwhelming. Thank God for vodka; I was on my way to an anxiety attack.
That feeling was short lived. The next day as we were winding our way through the bluffs and cliffs that surrounded the area, the light bulb went off…the adrenaline kicked in…a switch had finally been thrown. This day was the most fun I had in a long time, and my being caught in the moment was so powerful that it never occurred to me that I should be scared of being back on top of the world. But I wasn’t. I was living and being present. No tomorrow, no yesterday.
That feeling was as if every ounce of positive energy in the world had come to reside inside of and around me. The fear to be on top of the world was gone. I wanted to stay there…build a house there….never come down…and now when I get there…I fight….I scrap…I claw to stay there.
I do get knocked down. But now I know how to get back up there. I am not scared of getting back up there. I am pushing forward, pushing up, learning about and practicing manifesting my future to be what I want it to be…and with success that shows itself in small and major ways.
I now write regularly, though not as much as I would like. That is slowly changing. I am carving out time wherever I can to get the words out. Even if it is just a sentence, or a quick review of a reference website for my book, I do something to get myself back to the top of the world.
It took me almost 20 years after my initial observation to get here; I am finally getting around to writing for both myself and others. Writing is what gives me joy, what makes me feel whole, and what puts me back at the top of the world.
And I am not scared to fight to stay there, or to claw my way back there.
One thought on “Scared To Be Happy?”
You go Cary! I’ve never seen you do anything but land on your feet. The pride I have in you pours out of my heart. My son the writer. My son the man with his feet on the ground. I love you.