Some months ago I read about a woman who celebrated each birthday with a mammogram.
That woman would not be me.
Had it not been for my friend Liz's astonishment when she learned that I'd never had a mammogram, and my friend Jane who, being equally dismayed, proceeded to schedule the doctor's appointment for me, it may have been another five years before I'd gone.
And I should have gone five years ago.
I couldn't help but wonder as I drove home — is it possible that going to the doctor/getting a mammogram is as difficult for me as it is for some women to dare to dream?
If there is an even remote possibility that it is, may I share what I've learned?
1) Drawing on one another's strength gives us strength – My friends wanting and expecting me to go to the doctor (even taking the initiative to make the appointment for me), was precisely what I needed to safeguard my physical health.
What if we were equally persistent in encouraging our friends to dream, and thus help them avoid becoming desperate and/or depressed?
2) Wonderful things happen when we face our fear — I am proud of myself for walking through the fear of going to the doctor. But I'm also happy to learn that it wasn't as awful as I had anticipated, that I can confirm I'm healthy, not to mention, that I have some friends who care deeply about me.
Isn't it also true that when we dare, and we dare some more, we inadvertently begin to open the door to our dream?
3) Nurturing our selves is ESSENTIAL — After leaving the doctor, I was emotionally drained, and needed to do something nice for myself. So, I went to the Cheesecake Factory for a Chinese Chicken salad (nope, no cheesecake today), and was then off to Barnes & Noble where I browsed, and bought, and browsed some more.
I didn't use to do this. I would walk through something tough, (doctor's appointment, dream, what have you) and expect myself just to keep on walking. No nurturing, no ‘Atta Girl', no nothing.
Whose strength have you drawn on recently?
And vice versa?
Having faced your fear, how did you feel? What were some of the unintended, happy consequences?
When was the last time you gave your self an ‘Atta Girl'?
P.S. Isn't the above illustration wonderful? It's aptly titled the ‘Tree of Life'.