I am deeply moved by words and various forms of music. So when we had a virtual movie night in the Story Sessions community, I was quite surprised. I was surprised because I found that I actually liked The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. I’ve taught the original James Thurber short story, so I was a bit biased. My story sisters raved about the film, so I thought I’d join. Best. Decision. Ever.
This is a movie filled with secret messages and a thread of adventurous risk. I am risk averse, but I’m learning to take chances in life these days. I know this was a fictional account, but the entire movie speaks of the beauty and strength of the human spirit. It also makes me wonder how much of our lives are we missing out on because we don’t want the risk or we don’t want to pain associated with the unhinging twists and turns of life. I think we get more out of life when we live it loud and without regret, and sometimes that means facing the fear, the agony, the joy, and the uncertain adventure.
You don’t have to go very far to have an adventure. No traveling to foreign countries and trying daring deeds just to prove you’ve arrived at life. Sometimes it’s as simple as saying yes to the job that stretches your skills. Sometimes it’s saying yes to relationship and connection. Sometimes it’s taking the first step to a dream you’ve held for years. Beloved, each little step matters. Be kinder to yourself.
Maybe we should just allow our lives to speak. Maybe we should be a little less fearful. Maybe we learn to “stay” in the vulnerable, fragile moments of life. And maybe we take a bold step and find the adventure wasn’t so scary after all.
The movie, filled with inspirational messages, reminds me there is hope, so much hope. We have an opportunity for redemption. It is not too late to be what we are meant to be or to live fully whole and free. Maybe it takes on EHarmony Todd character to vouch for our story or a mother who sees what we cannot see, saving our knick knacks (with hidden treasures). Who and what we are meant to be cannot be lost. Somehow, when leaning into the hardest moments of life, we find our truest self. We find grace. We find truth. We find a resolve that was always coursing through our veins.
I think we’re all doing great things that may never be publicly honored on the earth. Does that mean we should stop doing great things whether big or small? Should we disconnect and disengage from living real life just because the searing loss is too much? Should we keep holding fast to the idea of who we wanted to be? Risk calls us out. It bids us dig deeper.
Tough questions, I know; but listen. You had value before you even took a step toward adventure. Your life was already beautiful, not asking for attention. Life is calling. Apply to it. You won’t journey alone. Your first step sounds a rally cry, and there will come a community of supporters to remind you, to uphold you, to shine light, and to speak truth. They may even help you uncover that secret that was always your real life.
It’s time to step into living real, right-now, life. Let yourself be seen.