be fearless

A few years back, I wrote a blog post about how scary the world had become. One paragraph in particular went a little something like this:

The food we eat is poison, the water we drink is laced with chemicals, and the air we breath is toxic. Every day, we’re told there are foreigners coming to kill us or men in dark suits coming to take our guns. People get gunned down for their beliefs, for rejecting someone or simply because they decided to go out in public.

Our planet is dying, there’s too much radiation, the pH level of the ocean is all outta whack, there are robots in a lab someplace plotting the layout of the world’s first ever person zoo (don’t believe me?), the government is owned by corporations who buy elections–Oh, and nuclear annihilation remains a constant threat too. And those are just the basics.

Seriously, what is there to hope for? There’s so much more to be afraid of.

I wrote this in early 2016, before the American government’s turn towards fascism, before the explosion of wildfires that continue to consume the West Coast, before a global pandemic, before a seditious riot at the Capital, before Russia invaded Ukraine.

This blog post came before a lot of things. And as far as I can tell, everything on the list continues to be true. “What a time to be alive,” I hear myself say all too frequently, in a mix of awe and terror.

A friend of mine said it best though: all these things may be true, but we hope anyway. We live. We go outside. We sing. We dance. We get drunk. We laugh and cry and love each other. When we don’t, the fear wins. Our lives shrink around us until we’re smothered.

So be fearless enough to live. Sing. Dance. Get drunk. Laugh and cry and love because it’s what we’re here to do.

Yeah, it’s scary.

Do it anyway.