My nephew, Justin, has always loved to shop. A number of years ago, when Justin was about nine or ten, I was visiting my sister's family, and she needed to pick something up at the local Lowe's. Justin wanted to come along, since he knew that there was a Wal-Mart right next to Lowe's, and had some money burning a hole in his pocket.
Pam told him that this was just a quick trip--she was just going to run in, get what she needed at Lowe's, and head straight home. So, there wouldn't be time for a Wal-Mart trip. Justin thought about that for a second, then announced that he was old enough to go to the Wal-Mart by himself while Pam and I went to Lowe's.
Pam weighed the possibility. Justin is developmentally disabled, so she wasn't sure that this was such a great idea. But she was willing to try it, too.
So, we all piled into the car and drove into town. Pam pulled up to the doors at Wal-Mart to drop Justin off as he peered out the car window, looking a little anxious. "Are you sure you want to do this? How do you feel about it?" she asked.
"I'm scared, but I'm going in," he replied, then leaped out of the car.
That phrase has since become an oft-used family saying. We Hathaways are not known for our boldness. But courage--the ability to weigh desire against fear and plunge ahead--is another matter. Justin's motto summed it up perfectly for us.
I'm thinking about this saying today because my sister used it last night when I called her in advance of the breast-cancer surgery she's having this afternoon. "I'm scared, but I'm going in," she said. Courage.