Reaching new heights

Pulpit Rock, Norway. Wikipedia credit

I was a shy girl, who grew into a guarded teenager. I never had the nerve to try out, or join anything at school. I was afraid of failure and being made fun of, that’s why my only goal was to blend in with the crowd. I probably never even raised my hand at school and I’m sure half of the people there didn’t even know my name. Don’t get me wrong – I had friends, but never wandered outside my circle. I played it safe at all times.

I grew up and although I gained some confidence in becoming a mom, I still worried about what other people thought and kept my head down. On the heels of a nasty divorce, I left America and started a new life in Norway (not because I was brave). After visiting numerous times throughout my life, I thought I knew what it would be like to live there. I was wrong.

Learning a new language and adjusting to a foreign culture is hard. I felt more like a refugee in this small local town, than an expat. My children didn’t seem to have any problem; They turned into little Norwegians overnight. Again, I kept pretty much to myself and tried not to be noticed. I knew there were people who thought I was unfriendly, when really I was just scared. Afraid of saying something wrong, afraid of being judged.

Only in a close group of friends was I able to open up and be myself, or as much of myself as I could be – talking another language…

My husband is the complete opposite. Once a local football hero (back in the day) he never cares what anyone thinks and oozes confidence. He’s dragged me kicking and screaming to events, in which I was forced to smile and meet new people. Together we have done things I never imagined myself doing…

Like cycling through France.

Sleeping in an igloo.

Dog Sledding.

Hiking 2.4 miles up to the top of Pulpit Rock (Preikestolen).

And publishing a book.

The whole time I was writing Fly Away Home, I never, EVER thought anyone other than family would read it. Why would they? I wasn’t a writer, or anyone famous, just a woman trying to explain her side of things.

There’s no hiding now…

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About maggiemyklebust

I grew up on the Jersey Shore and now live in Norway. I have also lived in Houston and the Netherlands. I have written a memoir called Fly Away Home.

Posted on September 21, 2012, in Stories in general and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 35 Comments.

  1. This is just fabulous, Maggie and that’s exactly what I think of you as well! You have achieved so very much and I’m glad that you are feeling more comfortable in your own skin and more confident. We love you, you rock! 🙂

  2. Ah, thanks Kate… you’re the best!

  3. It’s funny how we manage to find someone who will help us do the things we wouldn’t dream of on our own, someone whose view of who we are gives us the confidence to believe in ourselves.

  4. You are much too interesting and wonderful to be hidden, Maggie! It sounds as if you and your husband complement each other beautifully, too. Wishing you many more happy times together, ~ Lily

  5. Thanks Lily, I appreciate that.

  6. You entire journey has been so brave and bold. You have always been strong….it just took a while for you to see it? Love your book ♥ You are a dear ~

  7. Maggie, I knew there was something about you I ‘recognized’. I was so shy also, always tried to blend in and was definitely not a joiner. I can’t imagine writing a memoir…I think you are so brave!

  8. I am homebody too but married an adventurer. He taught me to bust out of my shell . . . including writing a book. Are we married to the same man?

  9. You’ve come a long way Baby!!!

  10. Another husband here that sound like yours! Although he hasn’t taken me on the same adventures, he has kept me doing things I probably wouldn’t have done on my own:) Keeps life interesting and I believe I’m better off for it! Never know what a day will bring when you live with a jock type who everyone likes:) By the way, I really enjoyed your book:)

  11. Good on you for being brave. I was shy when I was a little kid but lived in a small town where shy wasn’t tolerated, and it was considered ‘snobby’ not to mix in, so I just started to pretend I wasn’t shy (I’m a great actress when it suits)… and eventually I didn’t have to act anymore. Most people who know me would find it quite unbelievable to think of me as shy! I think it’s great you and your husband are complementary, and enjoy that in each other. Too much the same isn’t always a good thing.

  12. No one whould think you were shy now, Maggie. You hold yourself beautifully and have a wonderful in-line ‘voice’.

    Another great post – from a great person! 🙂

  13. Very nice. And the pulpit rick thing – super brave!

  14. itsallaboutpurple

    WoW maggie, YOU ROCK!!!

  15. I have always wanted to hike up to Preikestolen. If only my knees will hold up.

  16. Hi Maggie…I just passed on the 7 Things About Me blog award to you 🙂 You can find the post here http://paperkeeper.wordpress.com/2012/09/25/seven-and-7/ and it’s entirely up to you, just know that I appreciate you! – Bonnie

  17. I just rewatched a .pps video on Preikestolen and it’s terrifying just to watch these people sitting near the edge of that rock (viewed from someplace high above looking down at them and then the water miles below). You’re a brave woman!

  18. Maggie you are a fine example for others to mimic, like it or not.
    I love the pictures…you seem to be having fun!

  19. Maggie, this is a great post!

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