Where Fear Meets Love

Fear can be paralyzing.

And sometimes, when you start to feel your legs again and you notice the beating of your heart, you decide the only option left is to run away.

But here’s a truth I am learning that I want to share with you: 90% of your fear is all in your head.

And here’s the kicker…. The most influential, loud, convincing, and present voices in my life live inside my head. Now, I am no more crazy than the next gal, but I will definitely admit I am influenced daily by voices no one else can hear. And some of those voices are rooted in fear.

“You’re not good enough.”

“You let people down.”

“You are damaged, broken, and sick.”

“You will never have what you dream of.”

“You are nothing.”

Who gave these voices a house key to the inner temple I have been building?! Someone or something must be to blame for all these “toxic thoughts”!

And so I venture down the rabbit hole of blame and shame – who did this to me? Why did I let this take root?

But none of that really matters. These may not be accurate truths about me, but they are valid feelings. Feelings worthy of love and compassion, not anger, disappointment and shame. And so, when I sense a fearful behaviour or thought, I follow it gently and tenderly.

Hello, fear.

What’s that?

You’re feeling insecure.

I know. I can see you are hurting.

What’s underneath that feeling of insecurity?

You feel unloved? Unlovable? Oh… come here.

And in this place, I hold myself. Mostly emotionally, but sometimes a self-hug is very comforting. Sometimes there are tears, a nauseous belly, more fears, but I stay with it. Often it’s at this point that begin to write, letting it all out on the page.

And I do all of this without judgement. As if I am actually comforting a close friend. In her time of need, I would never say, “You are so selfish for having these feelings!” or “Watching you cry and sit in insecurity is so pathetic.” But I have said those things and worse to myself when I am at my most vulnerable.

Instead, I offer true friendship and love to the parts of me that are in fear. Through being with these emotions, breathing, writing, crying, meditating, running, staring into space, I begin to open up to the healing powers of the universe.

When you begin to offer yourself love in your times of greatest need, you become your own lifeboat, your own best friend, your own parent, your own guru.

Next time you find yourself paralyzed in fear, seek solitude. Tune in instead of turning away. Face those emotions and tell them they are not only welcome, but that you will be there for them. Strengthen your relationship with yourself by bringing love to all the parts of who you are. Especially the parts you usually push away. Those are the parts that need it the most.

Losing My Hamster

I want to believe I can get better. That healing is possible.

I want to believe I can break free from the inescapable hands that close in on me and squeeze the life from my body. Am I strong enough to withstand another attack?

Yes.

I hope so.

I think so.

The tears suggest otherwise.

I am constantly seeking my own strength. It’s like playing hide and go seek with a hamster. I know it’s around somewhere – I can hear it running about from room to room… maybe it’s under the dryer? And when I finally find it, it’s not a simple matter of reaching out to grab hold. I try to stay calm and find my sweetest voice to coax it out from its hiding place. “It’s safe out here, I promise,” but somehow both the hamster and my strength know I am lying.

So I sit and I wait.

Leaving little seeds to help it find its way back to me.

Eventually, I am successful and how incredibly accomplished I feel! I’ve got the upper hand now, I am back in control. Things are looking up. You’re not getting away this time!

And then somehow, in the dead of night, the bloody thing escapes and we start this dance all over again.

It’s hard to feel strong, to feel brave, when there’s an illness crushing you from the inside. The fear is crippling. Some days I can’t bare to face the real world, as I am sure they can see just how weak and insecure I have become.

I don’t want to admit to my loved ones that I’ve straight up lost the hamster.

Again.

Oh and in case you’re wondering, I actually DID have a hamster and he DID escape and hide under the dryer. It was a long night.

But through all this fear and searching, I cling to one thing:

Trust.

To me, trust is more than hope. Hope is a wish and a dream. Hope is often not enough to get me through the dark days. It feels fleeting and light, as if it could blow away on the wind when I’m not looking.

Trust is belief and certainty. Believing I will get better is the cure to the paralyzing fear. Knowing for certain that my story will change and I will rise above the pain and suffering stronger than ever, is the tonic I desperately need to withstand these constant trials. I can’t rely on hope to get me through. I have to truly trust that the hamster will come out from under the dryer and everything will return to the way it was.

Absolute certainty. That’s my cure.

I WILL reclaim my life. The full width and breadth of it. It will be better than it’s ever been and the most wonderful days of my life are yet to come. I will wake each day with a smile and a sigh of gratitude. I will confidently take on new projects and pursue new goals. I will be there for the people who are always there for me. I will navigate these waters to find my sandy shores where I will live out my days in peace, health, and joy.

How you might ask?

By being absolutely certain.