He walks with confident anticipation; he, after all, is a fifth-grader with five solid elementary years of environmental, social and intellectual experiences that occur within the hallways, classrooms, sidewalks and playgrounds of his space.
There are things that are new and unfamiliar ~ uncleared territories so-to-speak: a teacher, classmates, a whiteboard on the east wall instead of the west and fresh, demanded expectations of himself (some internal, most external).
There are things that are known and familiar ~ trusted landmarks so-to say: a relationship, friendships, the music room down the north wing and true, invited intentions of himself (some external, most internal).
I dropped him off for his first last day of elementary school and when I told him he had walked with “confident anticipation”, he clicked his head left toward my gaze and stated, “that’s what you need, Mom.”
He was right. I did. I was less than two-handfuls-of-days away from running my first race ever, with-close-to-no official running preparation, feeling similar to a fifth grader with no official-5th-grade-training.
There were things that were new and unfamiliar ~ advanced terrains as-it-were: a start time, co-runners, a sunrise instead of an alarm clock and unique challenges of myself.
There were things that were known and familiar ~ loyal routines just-as-though-I-already-knew: adrenaline, collective energy, my breath and the everyday standards of myself.
I crossed the finish line for my last first race of my life and when I told myself I had run with “confident anticipation”, I turned my eyes upward toward the sky and stated, “that’s what we need, World.”
There are less things that are known and familiar and more that are obscure and curious (equally internal and external and everywhere in between).
Neither sanguine boldness nor heavy caution will get past what is presently nameless, and certainly won’t lead toward what could be a courageous future.
In unchartered waters, I am working to find where I feel confident and letting that guide me into and through that which is unexplored and unclear.
I am learning to swim and, shit, I just became a runner.