Her characteristically eloquent response included reference to her decision to divorce her husband in her mid-twenties. She had still loved him, but even though she could not say why, she knew she didn’t belong in the relationship anymore. Cheryl closed with this quote, which I have loved ever since and never forgotten: “Be brave enough to break your own heart.”
When I first read this, it leaped off the page and dug its steely fingers around my own silently shattering heart. You know that feeling, I know you do. Something resonates with you so strongly you’re sure it was written just for you, just for that moment. It is the truest thing of all the true things that have ever been before. At the time I was in the process of completely uprooting my life in New Zealand and moving to Australia for no good reason other than the fact that I could not stay. And no matter how many times people asked me why I was leaving, I could not produce a better answer than “I need a change” – as if this were sufficient to justify the wrench of leaving all the people I loved. If you’re going to leave behind the people who define you, bolster you and imbue your life with so much meaning, you’d want to have a very good reason. I didn’t. Staying meant stagnation, but leaving meant losing so much. I knew ultimately that I would gain in the long run, but in that moment, surrounded by boxes, Customs forms and piles of the objects that had amounted to my life in Auckland, I could only see the losses.
The post in question is about fear, and how trying to overcome it completely is a waste of time and energy. Fear is, and should be, a constant companion in your life, Liz Gilbert writes in this excellent column, and trying to rid yourself of it is futile. The object is to acknowledge it but to not let it stop you from doing what you want.
Here's Liz's brilliant piece on this topic, which I encourage you all to read. She says it much better than I could.