10/23/2017

mental health|conquering fears

To know me well is to know that I am legitimately terrified of most things. Being in a car. Death. Life. You know, the usual, can't leave your house kind of stuff. And while I still have trouble leaving my house most days I've found myself conquering multiple fears lately and I'm really quite proud of myself. 

A fear of heights -- 
I have a terrible fear of heights. This is one of those fears that came along when my anxiety hit its peak when I was pregnant with B. and it's never gone away. I've avoided heights whenever I come across them. I've never been inclined to try and overcome this fear because I was too scared. Overcoming it seemed pointless. But then, one day, I just decided to jump on a Sky Safari at Taronga Zoo with B. {who, at six, is much braver than I am}. 

We did a lap of the zoo and I didn't succumb to an anxiety or panic attack. I was terrified. Completely sure we were about to die. I tried to envision ways I could save B. in that instance so she, at least, could make it through. But I did it and I felt so ridiculously proud of myself after stepping out of the thing when it was over.

Am I still scared of heights? Yes.

Would I do it again? Definitely. 

 A fear of boats/being out on the water -- 
Aside from the fact that I get terribly sea sick I am also petrified of being on a boat and being out on the water. So why the heck did I decide it was fine to go on a dolphin cruise on our holiday? Because B. wanted to. And, that's the thing, if B. wants to do it I'll do it for her ninety percent of the time. 

Sure, I was an absolute mess {well-hidden, as per usual} and had a panic attack and cried silent tears. I was sea sick and felt so certain that we were all going to die. I was terrified every single second we were on that boat. I didn't let on to Husband that I was having a panic attack and crying underneath my glasses because, heaven forbid, I ruin his time or make B. worried. 

It was a wonderful experience, watching B., but it was, quite honestly, one of the most hideous experiences and I feel quite secure with the fact that I never want to do that again. But, despite all the negative, I can happily say that I tried and that counts right?

A fear of speed --
Ok, this feels like a dumb one but here it is -- I am scared of going fast. In a car. Down a slide. Anywhere you can move at speeds greater than you can walk I can't do. Yet, down a toboggan I went, multiple times with B. and by myself, and I loved it so much I miss it. Sure, I still hate being in a car but, somehow, mostly, speed doesn't leave fear in the pit of my stomach anymore. I like it.

Fear of leaving the house --
I think anyone who knew me well last year would attest to the fact that I rarely left my house. I don't detest it as much as I did then but it still terrifies me. And, yet again, for B., I packed up the car and left the house, unattended, for multiple days while we went away. Sure, I couldn't sleep in the days leading up to us leaving. And, yes, I was too scared to sleep our first night away because I kept envisioning coming home to our possessions gone and our space invaded. Our drive home left me in knots. But we went and we had fun and I really was okay.

I don't think I'll ever get over the fear of my safe space being tainted but I've done it once and know, especially for B, I can do it again. 

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My mindset on life, on anxiety and fear has always been -- what's the point? Because, even if I do the thing I'm scared of it won't magically cure me. And it hasn't. And I don't think it ever will. I have never been capable of doing something that terrifies me and, when nothing bad eventuates, being fine with it. That's not me. I will always think -- well maybe next time. And, maybe, just maybe, that's going to be my forever, and maybe I'm never going to tackle all of my fears. Maybe they'll still always scare me but, maybe, I'll just do them anyway.

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