- Clean up the broken glass.
It is Christmas day at my house. And my mother is handing out presents to the grand children, when a glass candleholder is knocked and breaks on the floor. Glass shatters and skids across the floor. The children hold their breath. Everyone’s eyes turn to mum as she looks down, making sure everything is alright. And finally someone stands up and asks me where the dust pan is. Of course, it is my house, I should have made a move to help. It should have been me, but I leaned away from the glass, pulled my legs in and waited for someone else to deal with it. I’m never going to be the one that stands up first to a broken wine glass. I am scared of broken things. And that’s as simply as I can put it.
- Sprint across the street between cars.
I used to do this. Anyone who has ever lived near King Street in Newtown will know what I am talking about. A notoriously congested street near my old house, that I used to dash back and forth across. Now I am more deliberate and cautious. I wait for larger gaps between cars and I always walk. I always make eye contact with the driver, like I have told my nieces and nephew to do. If the drivers have not seen me I tend not to cross, even if I am sure I could make it.
- Backflips off high things.
When I was little I was fearless. I lived for a long time with access to a pool, and everyone in our family would flip and dive in all sorts of ways into the pool. I used to sprint around the pool when the tiles were wet and throw myself into the air, crashing down through the water. The other day my husband did a back flip off the bridge where we live, into the lake beneath. As I watched from the rocks below, I knew that I would never do back flips off things ever again.
- Sharpen Knives.
For a long time I worked in a kitchen, in a cafe in Sydney ( Near above mentioned road) The knives where always sharpened to an inch of their lives, and then place delicately in front of me. ‘Meg, this is a sharp one,’ they would say. Everyone would sharpen them accept me. Which is silly because it is perfectly safe if done correctly. I just did not want to learn. Watching people sharpen knives was a bit scary, and I probably never will learn. It is a job that someone else does now.
- Take Stairs two at a time.
Walking both up and down stairs, I tend to go a lot slower, like a child.
- Follow through with Dares.
Yes I have friends who still dare me to do things. I have a husband that sometimes dares me to do things. If it’s physical, I tend to say no, and not worry about the peer pressure.