Day 6: What are you afraid of
I don’t know who coined the term scaredy-cat, but that person has never met my rescue dog. My lab girl, is as sweet as can be, but is one of the biggest wimps that you can ever imagine. Among the things she is afraid of include:
- Large dolls (like a 3 foot santa)
- Any type of perceived boundary (a tool box on the stairs, a laundry basket near the door way, an extension cord across the room)
- Being separated from people
That is just the top 5. She is definitely the original scaredy-dog! I think that her neuroses are one of the reasons that we get along so well. We really get one another. When I first saw today’s topic I just had to laugh. I think that it would be much easier for me to write out the things I am not afraid of, than what I am! My brain works something like the character named Fear in the movie “Inside Out”. Give me a situation and I can tell you at least 50 ways that it could go wrong. It’s truly a talent.
When I was a child, there was a young lady named Jon Benet Ramsey that was murdered. I remember seeing her on the television and thinking that she looked an awful lot like I did. Blonde curls and blue eyes, she liked to sing and dance. To this day the mystery surrounding her murder is still that, a mystery. All I know is that they found her body in her parent’s basement and at 7 or 8 years old, that terrified me. Enter irrational fear of basements. It’s weird, because not every basement does give me the creepy crawlies, but some definitely do.
Death is also something that I find to be very scary. I am not afraid of dying. I know that this will happen some day and it’s a very natural part of life. I am however afraid of losing everyone I care about and being all alone. I also have a very irrational fear, that I will be the one to discover the bodies of all the people that I love who have passed which terrifies me if I think of it (I don’t often).
Death is not something that we do well in this country in my experience in health care. I don’t know if it is a universal fear of being alone, or a fear that allowing someone to die is somehow a failure. So often though I see families make decisions that, to me, seem to just prolong the death process and almost seem cruel. In addition, it scares me that even if I leave explicit written instruction as to my wishes, my loved ones can overturn it once I can no longer speak for myself if they disagree. Even my decision to be an organ donor is not guaranteed, though I have expressed my interest in doing so since receiving my license at age 16.
Overall, fear is a strange thing. Fear can act as a motivator or a paralytic. For many years I succumbed to the many fears that I had. Now however, I am not allowing my fears to keep me from following my dreams of living my life to the best that I can.