I have lots to say about being careful, about taking care. I have been careful in my life, to a fault. Not in a good way, but really: to a fault. I have been so careful in my life that I have not taken chances. I have been so careful that I have not trusted myself, I have put more faith in the opinions of the world at large. I have been so careful in my career that I have not really challenged myself, but instead have taken safe routes and avoided anything that might actually stretch my abilities.

Yes, I have much to say about being careful, and I am tired of it. But what I have finally learned is that being careful is vastly different from being afraid. I will no longer be afraid. For the first time in my life I am putting myself out there, I am putting my writing on a public forum. I will continue to do so, without fear, but with just enough care to try to present something that is interesting and readable.

I have always felt that I got this heavy dose of caution which holds sway over me from my parents, a couple of nice, loving middle-class regular folks. They came from a generation in which it was the norm to plan and be frugal and take care in one’s affairs and one’s life. They did not encourage me to take great chances, to throw caution to the wind. But they were loving and sweet, and perhaps the greatest bit of wisdom they imparted to me was to be happy, no matter what do the thing that makes me happy.

Perhaps I have come to embrace that idea too slowly, but here I am. Carefully, but fearlessly, I step into a new day. Thank you for being here.