Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Fighting Fear

I've had issues with fear my whole life.  I'm not sure when or why it started but I always worry, about everything.  When I was little I was convinced our house as going to burn down, or someone was going to break in and try to do bad things to us, or, well, you get the idea.  I slept with the light on, the door open, and the hall light on.  If something bad was going to happen, I wanted to see it coming.  I actually told my mom once that I was more scared when my brother wasn't at home because his bedroom was in the hall before mine and I always figured if something bad happened, I'd hear him and have time to react.  What kind of a crazy kid thinks that stuff?  A scared one.

As I've gotten older the fears have changed to some degree, but some of the old ones are still there.  I still check the stove every time before I leave the house and have more fire safety equipment then I could ever use (I hope!).  I always make sure every door is locked and I don't really like to be home alone at night.  Honestly though, I've figured out a way to deal with those fears for the most part.  They've been there for so long, that there just a part of who I am in a way.  I'm always going to be a worrier, I'm always going to be a cautious person.  It's just me.  I can make that work and still have a happy life.

The worry that seems to cripple me sometimes though, especially since hubby and Bean came into my life, is that something is either going to happen to them or to me, and we're not going to have as much time together as we should.  I always worry that somehow, just when things get good, it's all going to go away.  Hubby and I dated for many years before we got married due to a promise he made to his family. Sometimes I felt like we were never going to get to that wedding day.  And a few months before it arrived he had to go on a trip for his work.  I was convinced that something bad was going to happen to him.  That this thing I had waited so long for and was finally in my reach, would be taken away at the last minute.  I felt the same way when we were waiting for Bean to arrive.  It just all felt too good to be true.

Obviously, bad things didn't happen.  I got married, Bean came into this world as perfect as can be.  But I'm still afraid.  Afraid that something is going to happen to me and that I'm not going to be able to watch this beautiful baby grow up into a girl and then a woman.  Afraid of what her world would be like without me or hubby.  Afraid that something will happen to her and I'll have to figure out how to live life without her.  This fear lead me to take the decision about who would be Bean's guardian very seriously.  It makes me think about things like life insurance and if we would have enough money to have the right person take care of Bean if I wasn't around and so that her life would change as little as possible.  It makes me think about what I would do if something happened to hubby and I was on my own.  And I know that all these thoughts and fears are normal, and most days that's all they are, normal fears.  But on other days I get caught up in them.  And on those days I just sit back and watch Bean and hope that I get to get to be an old lady and hubby gets to be an old man.  I hope that Bean grows up and has the life she'll come to dream of.  Those days I don't need anything big or major to happen to me in this life, I just need to be here for as long as possible.  And I've had a couple extra of those days lately after reading about people who have lost husbands or are losing children.  I ache for them and I worry for myself.

In so many ways all of that feels outside of my control, just like the big things in life that I used to be scared of and worry about.  But I found ways to try to control those things.  I make my house as safe as possible.  The smoke detectors are checked regularly, the doors are always locked, and I'm cautious.  But for some reason I haven't been as careful with myself.  I need to eat better more consistently.  I eat perfectly at dinnertime but breakfast and lunch are usually my last priority.  I worry more about what's going in Bean's mouth then I do my own.  And I don't exercise enough.  Sure, running around after her is pretty good exercise, but I need more of it.  I can be a much healthier person then I am and that is something real that I can do to make sure that I am on this earth as long as possible.  I can't control everything, I can't change how other people drive, or the bad decisions that they make.  But I can control this and I'd much rather have something to channel my energy into then sit here and think and worry about what could happen.

And I'd also like to try to support those people who are going through some of the things that I fear the most.  I'm not entirely sure what I can do, but I can start here.  I'm going to make sure these people know that I'm thinking about them, that my heart is breaking for them, and that they have touched my life.  I'm also going to ask that if anyone feels compelled to comment on my post today that instead they go and comment on these blogs instead, or another who is going through difficult times.  Because as much as I love to hear from all of you and cherish the things that you say, they need to hear from all of us more then I do today.

Stella Joy
The Daily Miracle


  1. I struggle mightily with worry over the things I can't control.

    I love that you're turning your fear into a way to support others--that puts such a great spin on things!

    I hope you find peace pouring more of yourself out to others.

  2. Anxiety runs in my family, big time, but I never struggled with it until right before I got married. Everything seemed so very perfect-- I suddenly got the impression that something bad had to happen to balance it all out. I still have that feeling a lot.

    It's nice to know I'm not the only one :).

  3. I know that fear very well. When I was a kid, I was afraid my parents would die, and images of my life without them filled me with dread and horror. Now it is the fear of losing my husband and my son. But now I simply force the dreadful and horrible images out of my head, I do not want them to steal my joy in life, and thankfully I succeed most of the times. You cannot prepare yourself for the worst, and if you do, you just suck the joy out of living. But the fears are always there. Always.