facing the fear
Almost every-night I chat with a good friend of mine, and we share with each other our therapy sessions, our struggles, our day-to-day feelings and even pep each other up when one of us is down!
It’s nice to have these chats with my good friend because she helps me to feel less alone at times because a lot of the things she goes through from her past and her now, are the same things I go through.
Tonight I said to her “before I go, I want to write in my blog, what should I write about tonight?” and she said “fear” and when she said that, my heart thumped! FEAR! wow .. “fear of what?” and she said “any that you have”.
Fear is a big word, and the first thing that came to my mind was this quote about FEAR that I love, because it holds so much truth and it goes:
“Fear is nothing more than an obstacle that stands in the way of progress. In overcoming our fears, we can move forward, stronger and wiser within ourselves”
But what happens when fear was put upon you and you have to spend a life reversing that fear of the life you lived as a child? What if fear has control over me and I have no control over the fear?
So what do I fear? I have many! I fear the usual things that any mom would fear – losing my children, losing the ones that I love. I fear not being a good enough mom or wife or friend.. but those are the fears that everyone has – those are healthy normal fears.
If I was to really ask myself what it is that I fear, I think my answer would be – to never overcome the pain and suffering deep inside of me that comes from the pain and suffering I endured as a child.
I fear never living a life without fear. I fear never seeing what life is like on other side of the pain and all the visions that only I can see.
I think those moments when I sometimes wake up crying out of my sleep and not understanding why – I think those tears are the very tears I fear having almost everyday and they find their way out when I am not looking.
I fear the 9-year-old inside of me never having closure and never being set free to feel and know the love she never had and how I don’t know how to feel and talk about the pain without being in fear around just that.
What I fear the most is never being able to accept the love and care that is around me; that I will forever be alone in my pain and hurt without anyone ever really knowing how it feels.
But what I also know about fear is that overcoming fear is about being with fear. I think when we push fear away it only scares us more.
My therapist told me this story from a long time ago when he was younger. He used to drive his bike and this dog would always chase him and he was afraid of the dog and how it used to chase him every single time he would pass by. Well one day he decided to turn around and look at fear in the face. Instead of peddling away fast away from the dog, he decided to STOP turn around and bark back at the dog and the dog stopped! eventually he got over his fear because he faced the fear! He turned around and fought back at the dog and the very thing he feared the most was now afraid of him.
That is what I believe the answer to fear is .. facing it, stopping it in it tracks and facing it and fighting back the fear until it no longer has control over us.
It’s not easy, and I am sure it wasn’t easy for my therapist to take that risk when he was younger, but when he did, he overcame the very thing he feared everyday when he had to bike past that dog.
That is what I do everyday when I show up to therapy! I face the fears of my past and I fight it! I fail sometimes, and other times I succeed! it’s a work in progress that is why they call it healing.
So thank you friend for giving me something to think about tonight! Facing my fears and knowing I am not alone in these fears.
I don’t think I will ever be fear-free from the hurt and pain that was done upon me as a child and what that entails for me today – but I sure wont give up stopping the bike, turning around and fighting back at the barking dog!
August 30, 2013 at 3:06 PM
Lovely post, Karen.
August 30, 2013 at 11:44 PM
Very encouraging. Thank you.
For me there are lots of different fears and being willing to face them can mean “unpacking” them a little to see what i need in order to overcome them. With some fears I just need to move through it. Other fears I need help with. Still other fears I need to be gentle, take a tiny step and then release the feelings before taking another step. But it begins with turning towards the fear with curiosity and willingness.
I think having some choice about the pace is very helpful in being willing to face fears.