Guest Writer: R. L. Norman
I was frozen with shock. I couldn’t move. My mind was racing with so many thoughts.
“I can’t believe he did that. I can’t believe we did that. Right here in the alley between two buildings. Anyone could have walked upon us.”
At twelve years old, I thought about “it,” but didn’t know how, when or where it would ever happen…
But I guess all questions were answered…all except one: What do we do now?
We took a leap of faith. There is a first time for everything.
And this was my first time.
And I was scared! But let’s think about it: every first time is scary.
I remember my first day at high school. I was so nervous! I must have tried on every new piece of clothing my parents bought me–to see which one was the coolest.
I remember that first day I walked into school. I tried to be one of the “cool kids” and walked through the “groovy” door to the school. It was the only door that the popular kids walked through.
I took a leap of faith!
I held my head high as I sauntered in as if I belonged. And it worked! I was one of the cool kids.
If only for a moment.
And in no time flat, I heard someone behind me making a joke about my overalls, and shoes with white socks.
Can we say “country?”
I found out that in the year 1975, that was NOT a cool look in New Jersey!
I felt terrible; however, I continued with confidence and fear at the same time.
However, taking a leap of faith paid off! I was that funny dressed cool kid.
Now, fast-forward to my first day of college. It was the first time I was away from home, moving from New Jersey to Alabama. I was alone, nervous and afraid.
I tried my best to make new friends, meet my professors and adapt to living away from home.
I took another leap of faith while I made a fool of myself. I introduced myself to everyone–whether they wanted to meet me or not.
Unfortunately, though, I was obnoxious and didn’t realize it! The truth was that I was scared of life at that time. I was a fool, but it paid off. I ended up knowing lots of people.
I remember my first date in college. I took yet another leap of faith. It was with this girl with whom I was sooooo smitten! I ended up being her secret valentine, mailing her little gifts every day for a week.
Then, I asked her for a date on Valentine’s Day.
Before the date, I sent her eleven red roses. And, up until the day, I had bouts of nervousness–hoping she’d like me.
The day of our rendezvous–with the twelfth red rose in hand–I rocked back and forth.
Waiting for her approach.
As I saw my date walking towards me, I waved. Of course, she didn’t know who I was! Remember: I was a secret.
She walked up to me and I handed her that rose, introducing myself.
She smiled politely. And then, she told me she had to cancel our date! She claimed she wasn’t feeling well.
It felt like a kick to the gut! I was crushed. She walked away, joining her friends–who were giggling and laughing at me.
I suppose that my brown polyester suit, wide brown striped tie, and black shoes with white socks simply was not a good look! Though after my popularity grew, suddenly, she wanted to date me.
But her leap of faith failed!
In life, however, there are always going to be many leaps of faith. Many times, we are going to have to take a chance and try something new.
I remember the first job I had after college. I worked for a construction company. My job was at the bottom of the barrel. I did manual labor.
I took a leap of faith and got fired the first day. I held up the building construction by spilling mixed cement, miscalculating measurements, and taking too long to stack bricks.
At the time, I didn’t think my leap of faith paid off. But in the long run, I became a prominent architect in New York City.
You see, you have to take a chance in life and take many leaps. Especially when you are trying new things.
And those times when you are nervous about the unknown.
At twelve years old, my friend Robert took a leap of faith. We were standing in the alley between two buildings. The street lights had just come on, which meant we both had to rush home. I was supposed to be there already, and I knew I was going to be in trouble.
As we stood there, I was waiting to hear the sound of my mother’s voice as she would stand on the front porch yelling my name, along with the other parents whose children did not make it home once the street lights came on.
I told Robert that I had to go! Of course, he also had to go because of those street lights.
We stood there in silence, staring at each other.
And before I knew it, he took a leap of faith.
He grabbed me, squeezed me tight…and kissed me! Tongue and all.
I stood there, frozen with shock, as I watched him jet away.
After a few minutes, I regained my composure and sprinted home, confusion running through my head.
“My first kiss by a boy! My first kiss from anyone. So, where do we go from here?”
Well, we went from the alleyway to an undercover gay love affair! The leap of faith paid off.
In life, there will always be a first time for something. And during this coronavirus pandemic madness, this may be the perfect first time to take a leap of faith.
It’s the perfect time to learn new things. They are many possibilities.
Maybe you can look into enhancing your present career. Or explore a new career.
What about starting a business? Taking up a new hobby?
Or, just do something that you’ve always wanted to do.
I did a few things. I taught myself how to knit and crochet a blanket. I taught myself how to play the flute again, which I haven’t done since college.
I learned how to self-publish my books. And I learned how to invest in the stock market. From my balcony, I’ve even started taking pictures of people ambling by during this crisis for a book titled “World of Madness During the Pandemic.”
All of these things were my leaps of faith that will enhance my life after this crisis is over. And some of them might even put some more money in my pocket if I do it right.
So, during this crisis, take a leap of faith into something new and enhance your life! Let’s come out of this crisis hopefully richer.
And these are the times when you never know the outcome; but, you have to have confidence in yourself. You have to give it your all to succeed. You should reach for the stars and do your best. And if you fall short, at least you did your best and should be proud of yourself.
In other words, don’t be afraid to take that leap of faith! If there’s something new you want to do, then do it.
Create a plan…and jump! Leap into the unknown. You may be surprised at the outcome. The final result may be your hope, wish and dream that becomes a reality.
R. L. Norman is a writer, performer, and author of the popular series of novels entitled, “Honey Let Me Tell You.” The fifth installment “Honey, Hush: Don’t Ask And I Won’t Tell” was a sizzling sequel to the series. Now his sixth book, “Honey, I Can’t Stand The Rain,” drops in April 2020. As well, R. L. has created “Norman’s One Night Stand,” a one-man show he conceived, wrote and performs that showcases the main character of his series. And catch his Podcast, “Honey Let Me Tell You Something Else”, which returns soon to Itunes. All of these endeavors are part of Mr. Norman’s production company, Honey Let Me Tell You. You may reach R. L. at his on line home, www.rlnorman1.wix.com/honeyletmetellyou; by email at email@example.com; on Facebook at RL NORMAN; on Twitter, @rl_norman; and on Instagram @rlnorman1.