I’ve been to Medieval Times at the Excalibur Casino in Las Vegas on several occasions. The first time was back when I was teaching seventh graders about the middle ages, and I felt it was only fitting that I should be able to dramatically explain to my students all about a jousting match from firsthand observation.

The second time I attended was with a rather snooty guy I was dating who looked down his nose at eating his meal without utensils, and cheering for our section’s knight was clearly too far beneath him to even suggest such a thing. (Note: I said “was” dating.)

But last week— Last week I was there with two friends, high school buddies, who felt no such restraint at diving right in and participating with gusto! Even though we knew our impossibly ridiculous-looking Dragon would not prevail in the end, we weren’t deterred from whole-heartedly rooting for him. And what a difference it makes to be a part of something rather than to be merely looking on!

And such it is with life. You can stand on the sidelines, tentative and silent, or you can jump in with both feet and experience all the feelings that come with living to the fullest. Be a part of it! Have no regrets, never wishing later you’d been less reserved. Get involved in life; cheer for your team, your heroes, or even your dragon!