For the past couple of months I have been participating in a weekly flash fiction challenge set by Charli Mills of Carrot Ranch Communications.
This week’s prompt:
In 99 words (no more, no less) write about the experience of letting go of something that feels safe like training wheels.
appeals to me because it is about stepping out to something new, moving out of the comfort zone, letting go of the past, and releasing previously held beliefs and feelings.
These are not always easy things to do, but they are a necessary part of life. Indeed, it could be said that the very act of being born is the first of such occasions.
The ability to try new things, the willingness to take risks, the determination to get up and try again after failure and the persistence to keep going are important attributes of successful people.
In my role as teacher it was important for me to encourage the development of these traits in myself, as much as in my students. Without these abilities no learning occurs, no growth takes place.
Sometimes a gentle push (read encouragement/incentive) may need to be applied to help overcome an initial reluctance for a particular activity. This reluctance may soon be replaced by an enormous excitement, energy and future love for the activity. Other times no amount of coaxing can get an unwilling participant to budge.
It is equally possible that an activity towards which one rushes (headfirst, arms flailing, bells ringing) in due course loses its lustre to disappointment.
Below is the piece I wrote in response to Charli’s challenge. I have not revealed the activity I had in mind. I’m sure that you have experienced or witnessed several similar responses throughout your life. I’d love to know which one springs to your mind!
Please share your thoughts. I hope you enjoy this piece of flash fiction!
I don’t want to.
I don’t feel like it.
You can’t make me.
It’s not fair.
Leave me alone.
I don’t want to.
Alright. I’ll sit over there,
But I won’t do it.
You can’t make me.
I won’t even look.
It’s not even fun.
They can do it.
I don’t care;
Don’t know why they dragged me here anyway.
Told them I wasn’t going to do it.
Haha. What happened?
That looks like fun.
Hey! Let me do it.
It’s my turn.
Boy, this is fun!
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What a creative response! It made me think of the time my dad took me and my friends up to the cow pasture on the hill to play baseball. We were so un-American not wanting to play the nation’s game that every town played! We groaned; we protested and we had a ball in the end!
Thanks Charli. I thought it might be a recognisable situation. Thanks for sharing a your memory.
Yay, lovely, Norah! and so apt: sometimes we have to be sure we can safely say no before saying yes. great response to Charli’s prompt
Thanks Anne. Did you join in this week? I love your story No Milk or Sugar over at Flash Fiction Magazine. http://goo.gl/unPIzp Sad but true.
No, I haven’t managed it this time, and a little curious at why not. Have loved all the contributions I’ve seen so far – not sure if I’m holding out for the risk averse among us.
Thanks so much for shouting for my story – it’s actually an extract from one of my novels in progress. Am hoping to do a post about dementia in fiction soon.
I’m not surprised you haven’t joined in. I don’t know how you make the time for all the writing you do. I am blown away by the body of work (excellent work) that you have produced. Dementia is a very cruel disease. It is definitely not something to look forward to, but I do look forward to your post.
Tell us what it was about! Most enjoyable… and very relatable!
I asked you to tell me!