I returned home from a fun day at the park, toddler in tow, it was 83 degrees out and we only spent about 45minutes outside, 45 minutes of pure fearless fun. My Superhero toddler is fearless, he’ll take down any slide, conquer any hill, swing as high as mommy can push him and chase any kid around the park even the ones that don’t even know he’s chasing them. As I took my keys out the door and threw our things on the sofa, my daughter comes in from school. She asked about our day with a look of discernment on her face, but when I asked what she was thinking about of course she says “nothing”! So I continue to get myself together. Then she asked me at what age did I know what I wanted to do in life and was I afraid that I’d make the wrong decision. Boy oh boy if she only knew! Most of the time I wish I was as fearless as my two year old.
We ate dinner and as I got my thoughts together I begin to tell her how many left turns I had to make in life, how many hills I climbed and that even now at thirty something ,I still have days that I’m uncertain with my decisions and actions as well. So I decided to talk about FEAR. The opposite life emotion of Love. Fear is always looked upon as a bad thing. But truth is its not always so bad. So of course she asked me to explain. So here it is!
Fear is An anxious feeling, caused by our anticipation of some imagined event or experience. The Key word is imagined!
Fear since the beginning of time has saved our lives. Fight or flight, adrenaline running, take action type of fear that is. Kill the elk, run from the lion type of fear. But I’ve notice that most of my fears aren’t at all as serious. My biggest fears are of course in of the top five ( Mutilation, Separation, lose of Autonomy, Extinction and Death of the Ego.) But most often I fear Death of the Ego, yup that fear of being embarrassed or the fear of failure and what comes with it. The thought of one day disappointing my children and those who care about me, even more than disappointing myself. So I explained to her how I deal with those fears, how I have to be brave in order to be present and fully live. I explained that I have to get real and play the question game a lot when I’m unsure of myself. “What would happen if I was embarrassed, would I die?” “Could I be that bad?” “Or if I disappointed my family would they really stop loving me?” The answer to both questions is not no but hell no!! So with that said fear is only negative if you let it hold you back. It is only powerful if you let it immobilize you. Only is it that bad, when you allow it to stop you from living. We all have fears but we all also have what it takes to be courageous and overcome those fears.
Bravery! Yes we all can be brave! When we realize that we can fail and try again, make choices and decide again, fall and get up and fall down again, then we will realize what truly living is about. It’s about learning! But better yet, until you truly are living aren’t you considered dead? Let’s not be afraid of living! Let’s not be afraid to make the wrong choices. I told her that she doesn’t have to have it all together just yet. I explained that she’s not even who she’s created to be yet! She laughed and I told her ten years from now she won’t even like the same music, the same guys, she won’t look the same or even think the same!! So right now just live and live with purpose! Right now just do something! Follow your intuition and make choices that you can learn from, because that’s all life is, a series of lessons that turn us into who were are destined to be, but only if you live a little!!!
“What is a fear of living? It’s being preeminently afraid of dying. It is not doing what you came here to do, out of timidity and spinelessness. The antidote is to take full responsibility for yourself – for the time you take up and the space you occupy. If you don’t know what you’re here to do, then just do some good. “- Maya Angelou