Leaps of faith are not for the faint of heart. They are for the resilient ones among us. You need gumption, determination, panache, and a sprinkle of crazy. You need to be the person who, in conversation with someone trying to convince you that your path will be hard and riddled with bumps and detours, simply says, “Yes. I’m sure it will.” and smiles.
We aren’t trained to take these leaps. We have been taught that the path to security, financial or otherwise, is through college, love, work, marriage, career, kids, credit, insurance, grandkids, 401K, some place warm where our arthritis wont flare up any more and we can play golf and eat dinner at 4:30pm, and a plot of Earth adorned with granite that has been pre-selected and paid for.
If you live this life, if you are currently on this path, good for you. Although I’m sure you have stress (we all do) you are on a road so etched and deep that the dirt has created a wall of safety around you as you move forward. You know that you have a plan. You are checking off the boxes. You’re climbing, achieving, creating, doing, being what you set out to. There is great satisfaction in that.
I…(as I chuckle)… I took the leap. I did the thing that people said would be hard as hell. My stress keeps me up at night sometimes. How to build something new, something that will help people and effect change…and make ends meet while doing it? Well, that’s the hard stuff. All I know so far is that you work. You work hard and then some more…until your eyes sting and your brain hurts and your schedule is bulging at the seams.
I’ve started a nonprofit organization. I am the Founder and Executive Director of Sarah Speaks Up. My experience? Surviving domestic violence, volunteering for the Prudence Crandall Center, and most importantly being Sarah. So, yeah. I leapt like a gazelle.
Another leap? The first fundraiser for Sarah Speaks Up. I planned this event for months. I envisioned the hall, the decorations, the auction table. Months of contact this person, follow up, print this, post this, meetings, designing promotional items, asking for donations and so on. I worked. And yes, my eyes did sting.
The day of the event felt magical. My vision was coming together. I was so excited! The hall could have fit 150 people. About thirty people showed up. Of course, I felt like I didn’t do enough. I didn’t promote enough. Didn’t reach out enough. (Cue Catholic fist beating of chest)
But, no. As some very dear friends reminded me, it was what I meant for it to be. I made something out of nothing. I did what I set out to do. The bands were awesome! Shout out to Rockin’ Rhythm and the Chris Barba Band for donating their time and talent, and thanks to Jim Neri for booking them. The food was great! Thanks dad, for cooking and donating all the food. Thanks to my friends Erin, Gordy, Bridget, Tom, Brenda, Chrissy and Will for all your help. Thanks to my fabulous Board for being such an important part of this journey. Thanks to all the people who donated auction items, including my mom and my sisters.
We will be having another fundraiser this Friday December 4that the Masonic Lodge, 80 Walsh Ave. Newington Ct. from 6:00-10:00. Tickets are $20. There will be dinner, beer & wine, live music, & a silent auction (pretty much like the first one, but more intimate) I’m excited to see how many more people we can reach.
So, here’s my takeaway… First of all, thirty people matter. I touched their lives and that is more than enough for me. Second, leaps of faith are not for the faint of heart. I’m not faint hearted. I am resilient. I have gumption, determination, panache and a sprinkle of crazy. I am that person who, in conversation with someone trying to convince me that my path will be hard and riddled with bumps and detours, simply said, “Yes. I’m sure it will.” and smiled.