FEAR. I even dislike the word. I have been afraid of fear, in a sense. Impossible? I think not. I have always, I really think I mean ALWAYS, been unafraid of fear. I have, most of my adult life, at least, believed that courage is not the absence of fear, but rather going on in spite of our fears. I have believed in my own level of courage, of strength, of perseverance, but never really stopped to consider what those fears were that I went on in spite of. I know that for much of my adult life, I have convinced myself that I had no fears about anything much at all. Besides airplanes, and snakes, and some other nagging fears of things outside of myself that I quiver about when confronted with either one. But, the kind of fear that I am talking about here, the one that I have had the hardest time naming and taming, is one that lurks within me, is a fear related to a belief system that I possess, a goal or dream I have for myself, the unknown at times.
I realized, probably only a few days ago, actually, that I am not just afraid, but terrified. But, realizing this was really little comfort to me, because even though I was willing to take that first step, in acknowledging my fear, I still needed to name it, label what it was that I was specifically afraid of. And, what I came up with was relieving as well as upsetting, because I realized how long I had denied a fear that is very real for me, very normal, and able to be faced and dealt with slowly and gently.
I am TERRIFIED of being forgotten, of not being memorable. Okay, without sounding too dramatic, I really mean it. I was trying to figure out why it is that when I like spending time with someone, whether as a friend, or me wanting something more, that I obsessively call, text, drop by, to acknowledge my presence to her. WHY do I do this? I do it every time I meet someone new that I really like. I cried on it and thought on it for hours, days, last week. And that is my answer to myself. If I call or text that person, frequently, it will be almost impossible for her to forget me. That is my total fear. I even do it with persons that have been in my life in the past. Even if our parting was not good, even if we have not been friends for years, I feel the need to recollect myself to them, if I have a way to contact them. I DO NOT WANT TO BE FORGOTTEN.
My other fear was even a bit harder to admit. Since I have been single in the last year, I have noticed that I view almost every lesbian I meet as a potential mate. I have done this most of my adult life. Maybe others do it too, I don’t know. But, it seriously interferes with making new friends, and just viewing people in a objective light. It also keeps leading me to think that I need to be actively looking for a partner, because the moment that I stop looking for her, she will walk by me in the street and our opportunity will have been missed. I don’t think this is a fear of being alone, it is more of a fear of missed opportunity, to not answering the call of fate when it is at the door. I DO NOT WANT TO MISS THAT PERSON THAT IS MEANT FOR ME.
So, what to do? One thing that I am not doing, is beating myself up emotionally for these fears. When I really started to explore this stuff, I actually felt some huge relief at starting to figure it all out. And, believe me, some days, it is certainly not as neat and tidy as it might appear on the page, at least not in my mind and heart. But, I feel like I have taken a step, discovered a clue, that can lead me in a direction that I literally haven’t gone in yet. It is really the most free, in my spirit, than I have ever felt. Free to be, free to face life head on and not crack up. FREE……