May 7, 2013

Afraid

Day 7: The thing(s) you're most afraid of

To be honest, friends, I didn't want to write this post. I instantly knew what my strongest fear is, and there's a reason I fear it. I also like not to think about it because it's too sad. As far as fears go, I think the most powerful ones for me are the existential ones. Sure, I'm not crazy about finding spiders in the bathtub or snakes in the garden, but I don't actively fear those things. Any reaction I have to them goes away when the situation is over.

The ones that really stick with me and sometimes loom over me like a horrible storm are the big things. I am absolutely terrified of death. Specifically, I'm terrified of losing my parents. I don't want anyone I love to die, but the thought of losing my parents in particular is so frightening to me because they have been such central pillars in my life. The thought of not being able to get advice from my mom or hear my dad play folk songs on his guitar? Heartbreaking. It would require me to change my world so much that it seems completely daunting and impossible. Ugh. This is so awful to think about that I can't even write much more about this, friends. It's just too scary. Denial and avoidance are awesome defense mechanisms for this sort of thing. Let's just all live forever, okay?

On a lighter note, I do have a legitimate phobia. (That sentence might sound weird, but let's bring some humor back into the discussion, shall we?) I am scared of driving. I hate it! I can drive around my hometown without too much anxiety, but highways scare me. Merging scares me. Parallel parking doesn't really scare me, but it sure isn't fun. Driving too fast scares me. Getting into an accident scares me. I know that one day I'm going to need to conquer this fear and drive around the city. When the hubs and I eventually have kids, it would probably be unfair of me to make the hubs chauffeur them around while I merrily wave from the window. I need to be able to drive without panicking. Buuuut until that day, I am perfectly content to put more money on my metro card and take the bus.

Fears suck! They get in the way sometimes, and sometimes they activate too many terrible feelings. However, I must admit that facing them, or at least letting myself process them, helps a little bit. They don't hold so much power over me when I can name them and figure out why they're so frightening. That makes me feel a little bit better.


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