Saturday, October 12, 2013

Lead With My Chin

    Like a punch drunk boxer, I lead with my chin. It is a fatal flaw, one that I can't seem to train myself out of, no matter how I self-coach. It does go hand in hand with my leap-before-I-look personality and impetuous nature. I wade in, head high, fists up, heart pounding, waiting for the knock out punch, hoping I can deflect it. I had vowed that I would protect myself better this time, keep my defense strong, chin down, eyes up, lead with my left. Instead, here I am, chin high, misty-eyed, heart on my sleeve, Spidey-sense tingling a warning that I am about to get clobbered. But do I back down? Throw in the towel? Beat a hasty retreat? No. I duck and feint, tell myself that a little fancy footwork will get me through to the next round, suppress rising panic. I often feel like I am in the wrong place at the wrong time, that I shouldn't even be in the ring, but here I am, shaky, queasy, nervous, in over my head. Not that long ago I had vowed that I was done with the whole thing, I was too battered, too drained, too often sucker-punched. But I am the ragged, old fighter that keeps thinking that all I need is one more chance to prove myself a winner, the champ. One last chance to be on top of the world. It is the eternal optimist in me. "You lead with your heart, strong and true, loyal to a fault." Lead with my heart, far more painful and potentially devastating than leading with my chin, but the only way I know. The punch drunk boxer, battered and scarred, yet defiant and stubborn. It is the only way I know. Terrifying as it is, I lead with my chin.

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