I was 19. It was Saturday night. I wasn’t asking anyone in particular and certainly didn’t expect an answer, when I asked for something fun to happen. To me, I was just thinking out loud.
I was driving a “Hot!” 64 Dart GT with a 4 on the floor. I was feeling good. Waiting for the light to change, a car pulls up on my left and revs their engine. Catches my attention.
I smile as the light changes. We both hit it! Next intersection, we do it again. As the car pulls up to the third intersection, the passenger window lowers.
Smiling, I glance over.
An older guy and his date are smiling at me. The driver tells me they’re going to a dance at the Naval Air Station and invites me to follow them.
Sounds good, I’m in.
I hadn’t noticed the pretty girl, a year younger than me, in the back seat. Turns out she is the driver’s daughter, Lynn.
It was a magical night. Lynn liked me; I liked her. We danced the night away. We dated a few times after that.
Lynn was instrumental for me.
I didn’t want to be shy or timid. I dreamed of living out loud. But I just didn’t fit in. I despised that I’d been born that way.
Turns out, I hadn’t!
Meeting Lynn on this magical night was a major crack in my breaking out of my shell. How? Turns out I was the way I was because of the way I had reacted to difficulties and challenges from childhood trauma. You see, I fractured my head, developed epilepsy and damaged my hearing when I fell out of my family’s car as it went around a sharp curve when I was 4.
But I didn’t remember any of that. I didn’t remember or understand I was lucky just to be alive. I only knew I couldn’t play sports or do things others took for granted. I had thought it was just my shortcomings. Just my failures.
Timid, shy Joey. I despised my timid and shy self. I was tired of being a failure, not being a part of the fun I saw others having, doing, and being.
Meeting Lynn was instrumental for me. She and I went to a birthday party for one of her classmates. As we walked onto the porch, I was panicking, thinking – the gig is up!
As I knocked on the door, it suddenly occurred to me, “No one here knows me.” I don’t have to be “the me” others know. I can be “me,” the real me!
It was like coming over the hill and seeing the ocean the first time.
Pinch me, quick. I was popular. A hit. I even ended up dating the birthday girl!
For me, this was beyond my imagination. My dream come true – from me making a new choice!
This is vital and bears repeating: my dream of living out loud come true by me making a new choice. I’m not stuck!
Things change when I make new choices!
I was ecstatic.
Questions begin to come up: How did that happen? Can I do it again? What if it was only a quirk? It can’t happen again.
Not wanting to push it, I began putting it out of my mind. I began feeling hesitant. What if I’m wrong. What if it was only an accident, a fluke? Surely, it’s not really possible. I can’t really change things. If I could, others would have already done it!
I quickly buried it. Let it go. Put it out of my mind out of fear – What if I really could change my life?
Live my dreams?
I am. You can!
If this interests you, I invite you to ask me your questions.
Until Next Time,