In a land far far away, there lived a little sailboat. It was crafted from the finest wood and strung with the brightest sails. It took a long time to build, relying on the patience, dedication, and creativity of its builders. It showed beauty and vitality and potential destined to be realized.
When it came time to test the waters so to speak, the sailboat embraced the first sail on the lake bow-forward. It raced and won, raced and lost, meandered around the perimeter and some days barely drifted at all. Whether it was in a fleet or by itself, the way it punctuated the horizon was a work of poetry and promise.
Some time later, it was ready to move to open water- or so it thought. It had heard from sailboats in fleets past that on the open water, the sun can either burn your back or warm your face, the tide can either lull you to sleep or make you suffer ill, and even the very water can dry you out as much as it can quench your thirst. Above all, the wind can be your greatest friend or fiercest enemy. It can move you swiftly to your destination, or abandon you with stagnant sails. Sometimes, it can overthrow you completely or push you towards a place you never imagined.
The little sailboat alternated between fear and excitement, the thrill of the unknown mixed with an aching want to stay in the lake for just a little bit longer.
When it finally came time to make the jump, the little sailboat had made up its mind. It recalled something its builder whispered to it as she hung the final sail, “the elements will test you, but you must be confident in the way you throw your sail when it’s time to meet them. You cannot control the elements, only how you react to them.”