Never Underestimate the Value of a Good Little Adventure

Photo by chris robert on Unsplash

I am not a brave soul.

Now, I have done a few things that in retrospect perhaps required a bit of bravery, like raising children, or leaving a marriage at age 60. I have never set out with the idea of being brave, being first, or being bold. Life has happened, and with it some events appeared to use some amount of bravery in me–fortunately, i didn’t realize at the time or i would no doubt have simply taken a nap instead.

I’ve often wondered about those souls stomping about the earth with a Great Sense of Purpose. They may even have heard Directly From God what their purpose is. That’s something else I admire but can’t relate to… I am more of a meanderer through life, easily distracted, found reading a book when i should be washing dishes. I may, in fact, have been reading when God handed out the aforementioned Directives. This would explain why I am a meanderer, distracted by yarn shops and bookstores and cute little animals rather than Striding Fervently through my life.

The odd thing is, I don’t actually mind being who I am. I’m not a million percent brave. I’m not good at math (clearly). I can’t help but smile at people even if I don’t know them. I like that I’m a peaceful person. It’s not an exciting personality, but it’s mine.

The thing about being less than a million percent brave is that every little adventure I encounter is a new chance to be just a bit more brave than I last was.

Navigating life can be tricky for Meanderers and Striders alike. As much as we humans typically want to have our lives sorted out and just move ahead on that path, life is opposed to being sorted. Life likes to throw balls at your head when you think you’re minding your own business and making reasonably good choices. Suddenly you may find you have agreed to move to a Foreign Land where you embarrassingly have to keep saying “pardon?” when a local is talking to you, because words have more syllables than the words you’re used to in the Home Land.

As much as we humans typically want to have our lives sorted out and just move ahead on that path, life is opposed to being sorted.

And maybe the humans you thought you would be taking this Adventure Tour with decide to drop out of the tour entirely and go off-roading on their own adventure. Now instead of the Safety of Someone Familiar with you, suddenly they’ve gone, baggage and all, from the tour bus.

For me, this requires an undetermined percentage of Bravery. This tour was called The Friends Forever Tour. Now all the words but Tour have been blacked out with a huge Sharpie.

What’s to be done at that point, you may ask–other than run home crying because you’ve been left on your own?

There was a time–not so long ago–that I would have exclaimed “I should have known the tour would not work out! Why did I not see the tour was not going to work out?” and called myself names like Stupid and Foolish. (And perhaps some of those words were spoken.)

Life likes to throw balls at your head when you think you’re minding your own business.

But what does a Good Little Adventure teach one?

To use the Sharpie and write in a new name on the banner: The Good Little Adventure Tour.

Reframe the tour. Get new T-shirts. (The old one was getting pretty grubby anyway. Maybe this time don’t use the shirt you’re wearing as a lunch napkin.)

Keep trying to befriend the locals and the other folks new to the area like you are as you meet them on the tour. Keep shopping local, keep smiling at strangers. Keep writing about your Good Little Adventures.

Keep learning to be brave, an undetermined percentage at a time.

Who knows what might be found on this new Adventure?

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