Friends, Fear. It’s something we all struggle with. Personally, my biggest fear is being “found out” as a “fraud,” even though such fear is not warranted or even logical. For instance, despite my qualifications, experience, and passion, I rarely feel qualified to write these opening Editor’s Notes. I fear someone, one day, will call me out. I fear the arrival of a letter, phone call, personal meeting wherein someone says, “I see through you and your fancy prose.” By definition, we call this version of fear Imposter’s Syndrome. Maybe you’ve felt it, too. Or, perhaps, you’re a little more normal and are just afraid of spiders or snakes or heights. Fear is universal. But, on the flip side, so is bravery. I’ve heard it said that no one is truly a brave person, we just chose to be brave in certain circumstances. It’s not a personality trait, instead, it’s a mindset, a choice, a muscle we can work and flex and grow. In little ways, we can choose to be brave — like when I choose to write each Editor’s Note, despite the silly, scared voice in the back of my mind, or when you squash that spider. As we flex our bravery muscle more, the little things become less scary, and we grow more fearless in the face of the great challenges life hands us.
Yours, Jon Jonathon Platt (‘16, MA ‘19) Editor-in-chief, Baylor Line Magazine
Fear is not permanent. Like bravery, it is a mindset. We can choose to be fearless. We just have to work at it.That’s why this issue is so special to me. It is a record, a collection of examples, of people who have worked at being fearless and who show us that great things are possible when we stand up to our fears. Whether it’s Joslyn Henderson’s stories of navigating new worlds, a new calling, and a renewed voice; the captivating, encouraging, and emotional narrative of Sharon Herbaugh, a slain journalist; the prolific and world-changing work of Dr. Marie Bottatzzi; or the memory and legacy of legendary Baylor professor Dr. Dorothy Scarborough, I hope you are stirred and inspired to face life a little more fearlessly. When you’ve finished reading this collection (and I hope you will read each and every article), I would love to know how these stories have changed you. How will you be less fearful? How will you choose to be more fearless? This issue is comprised of four stories of four women who have each lived extraordinary lives. Though, I firmly believe that it is their choices, not their personality or their stature or their accomplishments or some super-human genetics, that make them personify the theme of this issue: Fearless. I hope you choose to follow in their examples.