Thursday, January 26, 2012

Fairytales and Stupidity

"If you feel stupid, you're probably doing it right."
I am thirteen-years-old standing in a gym, wearing an outfit that radiates Elle Woods and her endless enthusiasm, running through a routine for the ten thousandth time, trying to smile like the Cheshire cat and nod my high pony-tail like the most faithful bobble head, and all the while wishing I could disappear into the pile of pom poms to the left and never utter"ready, ok!" again. Just as my morale  sinks to the same level of hope as Snooki's credibility as an author, my cheerleading coach's words of wisdom ring out to her lost sheep in hopes of herding them back to the land of Perky Pastures,

"If you feel stupid, you're probably doing it right."

I remember back then, I would grimace when I heard these words. I did not want to whip out the spirit fingers and whip my hair back and forth like Willow Smith. Yet, at the end of the day, we knew she was right. The more we stepped out of our comfort zone and the more energy/ridiculous facial expressions that we would show, the better our routine would look.

Let's fast forward seven years. Today, I was sitting in my new English Fiction class. We had a simple assignment where we were to write a fiction prose, and today, volunteers could read their pieces to the class. That was the last thing I wanted to do. I know this sounds ironic considering I have a blog that can be accessed on the World-Wide Web, but writing has always served as an outlet for the words I couldn't say. When you write it, you don't see the faces of reaction and reception when you speak those words. You don't see the rejection or the turning of noses. Therefore, I was embarrassed and wanted to keep my words safely on the page in front of me. An internal voice whispered,

"If you feel stupid, you're probably doing it right."

After battling the internal voice that only grew louder, I wearily raised my hand and the next thing I know, I am reading my story to an entire class. I felt more than stupid- I felt moronic/delusional (which is even more moronic that I got so worked up over a simple story- but that's beside the point). Yet, when I was through reading, I smiled. I had stepped out of my comfort zone. I had poured out my energy and thoughts. I had taken a chance despite the possibilities of rejection or criticism. I was doing it right.

I think this applies to life as well. People who are close to me have often told me that I constantly "live in a fairytale" mindset. As we all know, life is not a picture-perfect fairy-tale, and it never will be. However, I think one of the reasons our lives can't be like the fairy-tales is because we don't allow ourselves to feel stupid. If you look at the fairy-tales, they don't make the "smartest" choices. When would entering a castle with dragon security or climbing a sky-scraping (literally) bean stalk ever be the logical decision? Or look at  the movies. We aren't going to quit our job,leap onto a moving boat, crash a perfectly tasteful wedding reception, stand before an entire crowd of strangers, and pour out our hearts to someone over a loud speaker and in the spotlight (mad props to K. Heigl in 27 Dresses). We don't do those things because we would be allowing ourselves to feel stupid.

Yet, are we truly living if we never step out of our comfort zones? If we aren't chasing our dreams even if there's a dragon around the corner or a giant waiting in the clouds? If we don't fight for the people we love even if we have to stand outside in the pouring rain with a Boom box over our head and tell them they can have the last piece of cheesecake (Go Meredith Grey!)? If we don't ride Splash Mountain in the middle of December, and if we don't stand up at a concert and belt every word of Taylor Swift's twangy teeny-bopper songs as an eighteen-year-old even if people are alarmed and watching? Are we truly living if we don't ever feel stupid?

Because from what I've been told, if you feel stupid, you're probably doing it right.

So here's to chasing after a life 
of moments where I feel completely, absolutely, 100%, stupid.
The moments where I feel like
I'm truly living,
 I'm doing it right.

1 comment:

  1. Shelby I love this post... I had to catch up on the blog after you mentioned updating it earlier :)