Were you ever a wall flower? Are you one now? The first time I ever heard that term I had no clue what it meant. But I was one for a while. In my world, a wall flower was one of the people who’d go to a school dance and stand around the walls of the dance floor watching the other people dance. Sure, they can mingle with the other wall flowers and chat up a storm about the football game, the music, about how so-and-so is dancing over there, about what what’s-her-name is wearing, or whatever else. They can be semi-secure in their state of “non-dancing”, but I now firmly believe that within all wall flowers there’s a desire to be out on the dance floor, experiencing the freedom of the music/dance instead of watching the crowd and seeing the pretty girls out on the floor and wishing to be dancing with them.
I was a wall flower for the first part of my high school career. I was no dancer at all to begin with. Never had done it. Feared looking stupid, looking uncool, looking a spaz. I could name you the dances, tell you how to do some of the moves, explain what video or whatever those moves came from. But I couldn’t do them myself because my dancing ankles were shackled by insecurity. As I got a little older and maybe a little more secure in my self confidence, I began to dance a little here and there. I’d do it exaggerated and purposefully goofy at first, so it’d get a laugh then maybe I could transition into something the looked halfway right. What I really never realized was that 95% of the people out there on the dance floor don’t care how the other people are dancing, as long as everyone is having fun with it.
Again, as I got older, I came to the place where I could experience freedom to not feel the magnetic pull of the wall or the punch bowl. I could be me out there in the moving crowd.
But in many ways I still feel I’m a wall flower of sorts. I stand on the fringe of things looking in. Now I do my research on them, might even pay for books, magazines, etc. on the subjects. But I still hold back from the plunge. An old girlfriend (she’s now my wife) used to think I was cocky. But I think my perceived cocky manner was really my reluctance to try something I wasn’t sure I’d succeed at. Funny huh? Insecurity seen as arrogance.
But a few things I feel I’m being a wall flower about? Um, web design. I have a desire to learn it, but I don’t jump in there and do it. I’ll read some on it, spend some $$ on software, read the manuals, but don’t really get my hands dirty in the design aspects of it, learning HTML, PHP, CSS, all that good stuff.
Then there’s exercise. I have read many a Men’s Health but I’ve not given the time to really dedicate to it. I don’t know if this is an insecurity issue or just a motivation issue as well. But I just know that if I would jump in there, start “dancing” with that exercise I would see definite results.
Youth Ministry. I read mags, read books, read websites, but sometimes don’t try to implement things because I’m not sure how it’d go over or not. And instead I feel I sometimes get bogged down in mediocrity. I think it’s a combo of insecurity and time management. But that’s another one.
I could probably list a few more things, but I’ve rambled long enough now. But my new motto is (for a while at least), “Life is a big dance; don’t be a wall flower!” There are lots of pretty girls (figuratively, of course (my wife reads this). translate it as “favorable opportunities”) in life that you don’t want to die wishing you’d at least asked for a dance.