I am greater than my fear
I’m scared I’ll be a terrible wife. That I’ll fail to provide two children the love I’ve shared with one. That I’ll choke on my wedding day and run not toward but away. That marriage will change everything. That my pregnancy will end not in childbirth but child loss. That I will hurt the people I love and be unable to remedy those hurts. That I will not just err but fail significantly on the job. That my car will break in its now long daily drive, despite the care I take to keep it running well. That I do not deserve the love in my life, being far too grumpy and stubborn to warrant such affection. That I’ll never finish editing my already written books, or write a new one. That death is the end, and that it isn’t.
That’s just a starting list. I could write a novel-length list of my fears and only scratch the surface.
My customary silence about my fears doesn’t mean I don’t have them, or wish to conceal them. It reflects something else: a choice in perspective made based on my experiences so far.
I have lived alone in foreign lands.
I have written books, and even published a few.
I have shared personal, heartbreaking experiences despite shaking hands in the hopes others will understand there can be goodness after suffering.
Like my siblings, I’ve broken the cycle of abuse.
I’ve run two marathons, and run–mostly barefoot, in the rain–a half marathon.
I’ve been through law school and turned into a skilled worker thanks to guidance from some great managers.
Most challenging, I’ve worked from home for two and a half weeks while simultaneously caring for my then infant son and watching my mom die.
When I am silent about my fears, my silence reflects neither absence nor concealment. It reflects instead the knowledge borne from 34 years of being afraid . . . and seeing that fear predicts nothing if it is acknowledged but not accepted as truth about either capability or probability.
I am afraid, my friends, make no mistake about it.
But I am greater than my fear, so though I will acknowledge it, I will not grant it more power than it warrants, or deserves.