The Wisdom of the Duke

“Courage is being scared to death – but saddling up anyway.”

I’ve been scared shitless about a lot of things in my life. When I went off to the Academy at 17, I was scared out of my mind. When I took my first active duty assignment, I was scared out of my mind. When I proposed to my wife, I was so scared that I when she said yes, I couldn’t feel my hands.

If I made a list of the things I’ve done in spite of being scared, it would essentially be a list of the moments in my life that I am the most proud of.

Courage is sort of a dying virtue these days. It seems to me that society would prefer that when faced with our own fears we should simply cower before them, and seek counseling and “support”. I suppose it makes sense in light of the “Culture of Self-Esteem”. If you never attempt anything that scares you, you’ll never fail and you can continue to feel good about yourself.

As much as I hate-hate-hate failure, I’d much rather lose while trying my damnedest than never try at all.