• Meghan Rose

Brave Foolery

I would not recommend the leap I took 8 months ago to move to New York. Because recommendations are for tourists, Yelp scourers, listicles, Alanis fans who want to live and learn. I very rarely recommend anything I've done to anyone else. Because what I do is for me. I can say, I still don't have any regrets, and am strongly testing my theory that you can just decide to not have them as a lifestyle.

The question I'm grappling with recently is this: What is the difference between bravery and foolishness? Bravery is the ability to confront unpleasant and difficult things without fear. Courage is the ability to do brave things despite fear, for a purpose. Brave acts are done for their own sake. Courageous acts are done in order to gain something, or learn something, or even simply change something. Where is the line? Can you be courageous for the sake of curiosity? And are certain kinds of bravery foolish, or even psychopathic behavior? Probably.

The second I felt like I knew who I was in a thousand different facets (a wonderful accomplishment and feeling by the way, I recommend taking the time to do the work), I uprooted my whole life. Granted, there were long term self-actualization and financial reasons, but I really didn't have to do it. Why did I do it? I still ask myself that. I am driven by a weird faith that I've gotten this far, I'm on the path, it must have to teach me something.

I know I'm supposed to be a musician, but why wasn't I happy with what I had? I can write songs anywhere. I can perform anywhere. Why seek to achieve something "greater"? Was I bored? Maybe. Do I crave lots of attention? Kind of, yes. It's awesome to forge a connection with so many people at once. Do I have a death wish? Kind of, yes. I get a sick thrill out of fucking shit up just to see what happens. Just to see if I can handle it. And, in many ways, that is the reason itself. This part of the story needed a more exciting chapter.

I'm afraid every day. I do it anyway. I hate a lot of aspects of my life right now. Fear itself is a feeling that can be embraced. Just like embarrassment or jealousy. Unpleasant feelings are just that. It's easy to get into a loop of "oh I'm afraid, crap now I'm afraid of always feeling afraid" and it goes on and on. If you allow yourself to say "ok, I'm afraid" then you can keep going. Just take it out of your body and look at it, name it. You've been afraid before and you're still here. The point you don't want to reach is paralysis. Because this is what I see life is and what love is: change and growth. Forward, backward, better, worse - these are all value judgments on how you are growing. Why must we assign a value to 'negative' emotions? Isn't the negative side of the battery just as important as the positive one? I don't say this to shame anyone who feels like they aren't moving anywhere. If you aren't moving anywhere and don't have any anxiety, maybe you've found a nice drug that works for you. Or you've reached nirvana. Or you're just really type B. Maybe you've accomplished a lot already and you're content and don't want to go any further and it's time to relax for you. I expound on this for those of us who struggle. For whatever reason we struggle, it's because we're on a path toward something. We will be afraid, we will be sad, we will be angry, we will be happy, joyful, excited, calm, nurturing, grumpy, tired, wide awake, you will feel so many things. And who are you to judge your feelings if you don't know what the end of the road looks like?

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