A few weeks ago I learned a trick in my pole dancing class. The trick, called a Peter Pan, requires you to grasp the pole high with one hand while your other hand braces your entire body a few feet lower. You then use momentum to literally swing your entire body around the pole until you gracefully lower to the floor.
The first time I tried it, I didn't lower myself gracefully; I fell, full-body onto my right knee. The sound was so loud everyone stopped to make sure I was okay. I was shaken a little and developed quite the nasty bruise, but I was okay. Or so I thought.
Fast forward the last few weeks. I've nailed my Flyer and my Dancer and I can do one handed tricks like the best of them, but what I'm scared to death of doing is the Peter Pan. I can't shake the feeling that I'm going to fall down and hurt myself again. I'm thinking about it too much says my instructor. She's right, I am. I can't shake the fear.
I've lost faith in myself.
The loss of faith extends beyond the pole dancing. I've lost faith in my ability to get pregnant again. I got pregnant on a fluke. I have no idea when the conception occurred and obviously something didn't work out. Now that I'm on the other side of the miscarriage I feel like I've failed. Holding my cousins' little babies made me realize that I did, and do, want a baby. And now my body won't cooperate like it had before.
I've lost faith in my professional life. I used to think I could be anything I set my mind to. Now I realize I can be anything that keeps me in the same skill set and comes with a good health plan and family-friendly hours. I don't know how to calculate risk anymore. My barometer for success is all off. I'm content in my job and I'm good at it. I want to be great at it, I just have no idea how to get there.
The only thing I haven't really lost faith in is my marriage. For some obvious, and not-so-obvious, reasons my husband loves and adores me. He'd never say that he couldn't live without me but I know he'd admit that having me as his partner helps make life a little more tolerable.
So now what? Do I take the pole dancing approach to life and hold on tight, loosening up the grip as I go or do I pray?
I don't know. I'll probably wind up on my knees either way.