Dear Fearful Self:

Dear fearful self,
You suck. You are being unreasonable and irrational. And for what? For a what if? For a maybe could be someday? For a memory of a different occasion? Stop it; you’re better than this. If you don’t knock it off, you’re going to push away what you want most. You’re a mess, it’s time to clean yourself up. Write about it.
-Me

They say death has stages people need to go through in order to move on. I think fear does too. Realizing it’s there, rationalizing it, (the optional, sometimes dangerous) internalizing it, accepting it, facing it, and conquering it. There’s a lot of things that could go wrong when trying to work your way through these steps in a healthy manner. I once was “good” at only doing the first two and the optional one and it always bent me over and stuck it to me. After a while of that, a past self decided I needed to start going through all the steps- and so it’s been. Until recently.

I’ve been under a lot of outside stress unrelated to this inability to deal with this new fear. Maybe a factor in my consistent defeat; maybe not. The thing is- like most fears are- this is a complex fear. It’s not one simple thing I’m scared of- it’s multiple things that are part of a progression leading to my biggest fear, and so far I’ve been approaching it all wrong.

First- I did, in fact, internalize it. Big surprise that it blew up in my face when I could no longer keep it…well…internal. At that point, the fear escalated, but I was back at the beginning- realizing that the fear not only escalated, but there were other factors leading to other avenues of fear to consider, rationalizing why I was scared and then questioning if that rationalization was legitimate (part of me says yes- part of me thinks I’m being a totally unreasonable “girl”), and then I internalized it again. And it blew up on me. Again. And then instead of internalizing it, I accepted it. At an inopportune moment- but I accepted it nonetheless and decided it was time to face it and defeat it. Because whether or not it is a rational fear or not, it’s there and I knew I needed to get past it before it turned my life upside down.

So, tonight, I feel like I “faced it”. I said it out loud, while also talking about the rationalizations behind it. I think there is a pretty solid “game plan” in place that will be the main way to defeat this. But there’s also a back up to ensure none of this fear’s little buddies try to make an appearance and drag me back to the start. I think I just need a week. I am also writing about it, which helps me face it and confront it to myself.

Fear is a bigger driving force than we realize, perhaps as powerful or more, in some instances, as love. Fear likes to test love time and again and if fear is lucky, it will catch love at a weaker point and start to rot away the framework love has worked so hard to strengthen. Sometimes fear wins. Not this time. Fear, you are a worthy opponent but I will conquer you and then serve you your ass on a plate and then you will be afraid to ever come back to me.

 

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About dawn of april

Figuring life and the "about me" out as I go :) In a nutshell: I work, go to school, run a women's book club, support the local music scene in Denver, and whatever else floats my boat at the time.
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