Over the holidays, my husband and I went on our annual New Year’s Eve date night that’s not on New Year’s Eve. This year we went on Dec. 29, which was much easier than the “big night” to get a babysitter. And restaurants don’t inflate their prices. (For those in the D.C. area, we went to TenPenh Tysons, whose Red Thai Curry Shrimp is to die for. It is, in fact, the same recipe from the original TenPenh that used to be downtown.) After dinner, we went to see the Bradley Cooper / Lady Gaga movie, A Star is Born.
I’m a sensitive movie-watcher, and this brilliant film reverberated in me for days. The lingering effects were both good and bad, given it was both beautiful and dark. There was one moment, though, that resonated so deeply with me, and that I think we can all relate to in the world of courage and working parenthood.
For those not familiar, the movie is about a famous singer (Bradley Cooper’s character), who discovers – in a drag bar – a young woman’s singing and songwriting talents (Lady Gaga’s character). He ultimately sends a private car and plane to take her to one of his concerts on tour. She thinks she’s going to watch the show, but at one magic moment, he calls her up on stage to sing with him. What’s more, it’s a song she had written.
That look on her face when he calls her on stage is the one I’m talking about. The “no, no, no, I can’t do that” look. The “not me, absolutely not me, I’m not worthy,” look.
But what I loved more was the next magic moment, where her expression changed into “okay, here goes nothing” (a.k.a. “screw it, I only get to do this once” or “yes, I’m in, what the hell”). And she finds herself walking to the microphone. Then singing with him. And then the crowd goes wild.
Our Own “Here Goes Nothing” Moments
Surely you’ve had those “here goes nothing” moments, right mama? True, they probably weren’t as glamorous as launching yourself into a career as a grammy-winning artist. But they’re big and important nonetheless.
When did you have that feeling of being completely and utterly terrified, but throwing caution to the wind and going for something that once seemed crazy?
The movie got me thinking about those times in my own life when I took a deep breath, said “who cares what anyone else thinks,” and walked firmly in the direction of my dreams.
Getting on a plane to live in France for a year.
Walking down the aisle toward my amazing husband of now 10 years (though neither of my parents was there to celebrate with me).
Going to the hospital to give birth.
Handing my baby over to his first daycare teacher.
Getting back into the driver’s seat of a car with a therapist, after becoming terrified to drive.
Publishing my first blog post.
Leaving a job I had outgrown. And bringing a colleague with me.
Launching my book.
Hopping on a plane to Colorado to work with a business coach.
These are the moments, I realize, that make me feel alive. That make me feel like I’m living my path. Not one someone else set out for me. These are the brave and courageous moments I want to have more of in 2019. Which leads me to my word of the year.
My Word of 2019
I don’t make New Year’s resolutions anymore. I used to, with mixed success. (The “I will floss my teeth every day” one stuck over a decade ago…others didn’t.) But choosing a word of the year (WOTY) has been incredibly effective for me.
Two years ago, I chose “stretch.” That year, I started doing yoga every morning – still do – and I more than doubled my business revenues. Last year, I chose “worth.” I deepened personal relationships while believing more deeply in my own value. And I raised my prices. To keep each word relevant and top-of-mind throughout the year, I reflect on it daily in The Five Minute Journal.
This year, I choose TRUST. This is the word I want to sink into when faced with a “here goes nothing” moment.
Even just saying – or thinking – the word “trust” causes me to take a deep breath. Relax my shoulders. And let go of fear.
I trust that I will make good decisions. That my community will support me. And in the love that surrounds me. I trust that finances will work out. That mistakes I make won’t be dire, and that I’ll learn from them. And that my kiddos will be okay. Even when I travel for work. Or when they have complete meltdowns. I trust that my career will progress. And that prioritizing sleep and my own well-being are good investments.
At least, I want to trust in all of these. Sure, I know I’ll have crises of confidence around each of the things I’ve just listed. But that’s the point of having the word of the year. To remind myself that yes, even when I doubt whether something will work out, I still have a choice to choose TRUST.
What have been some of your “here goes nothing” moments, mamas? Please do share below in comments. And if you have a WOTY, share that here, too!
If you need more help getting your head in a better place to return to work after maternity leave, join us for the next session of Mindful Return.
Want more practical tips on working parenthood? Check out my book, Back to Work After Baby: How to Plan and Navigate a Mindful Return from Maternity Leave.