Hello, friends!

Apologies for my absence, but I have been off conquering fears and climbing mountains (okay, not literal mountains–more like miles of sidewalks).  I accompanied the hubs on a business trip to Chicago, and while he was working, I was off exploring (a small radius of) Chicago.

Many things about this trip terrified me.  In no particular order:

  1.  Driving in Chicago.  On top of that, driving a large box truck in Chicago.  Did I mention it is a stick-shift?  Thank goodness the hubs drove one as his first car in HS.
  2. Leaving my babies with my mom.  The kid-free vacation was MORE than welcomed–no one crying every 3 minutes (unless you count the business women walking down the sidewalk crying into their cell phones), no one asking me to help them (unless you count the street beggars), and my favorite, no one waking up in the middle of the night (unfortunately, our hotel was one block over from the hospital, so sirens replaced this one.  I would gladly take the 1 or 2 nightmare wake-ups than the 7 times of waking up to sirens).
  3. How to pass the time the hubs had to work.  Would I just sit in the booth for 7 hours? Would I take off exploring Chicago by myself?  Seemed to be asking for trouble–I learned women are unsafe walking by themselves anywhere, and given the rulings in the recent rape cases, I wouldn’t put too much faith in our justice system to not blame ME should something happen.  “Well, folks, she did have luscious red hair and had the nerve to be walking down the sidewalk by herself.  I’ve also seen the murder stats (I mean, I might have researched it before we left).  Let’s just say, I’m very nervous in large crowds (read: anywhere there are more than 20 people) and I haven’t really ever had to be completely ALONE.
  4. Uber.  The hubs swears by it.  My fears from #3 extend into this category.  I am going to willingly get in the car with a stranger?  Hmmm.

There are many other things that make me anxious about leaving my children behind and venturing off into a strange city that frequents the news for not-so-pleasant reasons, but the good news is all of my fears above were easily absolved.  The hubs drove a stick shift in high school, and honestly, once we parked the car (in a truck yard, smh) we could simply walk or Uber anywhere we wanted to go.  I never Ubered alone, and the hubs intimidates everyone anyway.  The walking paths were easy to navigate, and I never felt in danger.  I actually felt empowered to be self-sufficient and quite brave venturing off alone.  I found Starbucks, Target, and a beach.  What more does a girl need?

Lesson, friends, is to be brave.  You can be cautiously brave, but don’t let your fears hold you back.  Don’t live in the shadow of fear.

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