I was 8 years old and terrified. It was time for me to go to the dentist and I didn't want to go. I hid under my bed and stayed quiet. I just knew the dentist was going to do something horrible to me.
If I remained silent, my mother wouldn't find me, and the appointment would go away, right? No such luck. My mother found my hiding spot, grabbed my ankles and pulled me from my protective confines. Grasping at toys, clothes and dust bunnies, there was nothing to protect me from what was to come.
I feel this way even today. The fear of what's happening to me medically often triggers my inner desire to hide under the bed in silence. But even if I hide in fear, I'm left under that bed, in the dark...all alone. And THAT can be the scariest time of all.
Fear can lock you into a state of insecurity, but it will NOT leave you powerless. You remain in control over how you choose to handle it. You can let your fear steer you under the bed, or you can steer your fear through your obstacles. No one ever became great by letting fear steer their life.
Yes, fear causes anxiety, stress and anger - and that doesn't feel good. I have watched people in my life waste way by hanging on to these feelings. I know that if they would let some of this anger go, they would live a much happier life.
My appointment with the dentist when I was 8 yrs old was not that bad....in fact, by filling the cavity, I avoided a tremendous amount of pain later. That day, It took my mom to help me beat my fear, even as I went kicking and screaming. Now, I'm stronger, and I have people to help remind me of the consequences of fearful paralysis.
Even as I experience extreme fear, I am experienced enough to know that hiding from what I fear, letting fear steer my path in life, will drive me straight into pain. The pain of not enjoying my children or not living long enough to meet my grandchildren. The pain of a life unlived, under cover of isolation and darkness.
Sure, I occasionally have to be dragged out kicking and screaming. But over the years, I have become more willing to instead reach out my hand to those around me who want to lift me up and out of my fear. I look through my fright for the sight of solutions. I will not allow my fear to drive me no matter how hard it pulls at the wheel.
Fear is no small topic - and I have thousands of words left to write. And I'll get around to it. But, if you'll excuse me for awhile, I've got a dentist appointment to get to!