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Fear.

March 9, 2007
by

I’ve been thinking about this post for a while. Since reading this and then this…. but totally cemented by reading an email from a dear friend that caused me to really think about a) a way to make her feel better but b) really looking inside myself and try to get to the bottom of what I think and why I think it.

About life. The universe and everything. The bit afterwards. If there is.

The email started like this…

When Rowan was born I developed this fear of falling down stairs.. weird but true..

Even now – I’m almost convinced that I’ve had this weird kind of premonition that I’m going to die falling down the stairs.. well an accident at least.. maybe death is a little extreme!! 🙂

Whenever I’m coming down stairs I always kind of half imagine or dread that I’m going to catch my heel in my trouser leg or step wrongly and slip.. and I don’t even have to have a child in my arms to be worried about it.

Surely if you’ve been reading for a while – you’ll have already understood that I’m a bit loony… these are just some of the mental thoughts that flitter and skitter through my mind on a daily basis..

I’m very consequence oriented. If I’m making a choice, I’m always thinking about what that choice means.

What will happen if I do that?

This could happen. That could be bad. Well I won’t do it then.

I think mostly this approach saves me quite a lot because (although it sounds ridiculously impossible like I’m oxymoronic) but I’m actually also pretty impulsive, particularly when a situation appeals to my protective/defensive streak toward my loved ones or even my extended family of staff.

So, being consequence conscious often means I am able to save myself from making a complete tit of myself or even getting myself into a trouble… whether work or home related.. 🙂

It’s the same kind of thing that’s stopped me from driving for years. I just can’t think of being in control of a car without thinking that I could kill someone. Probably sounds ridiculous to most people I’m sure..

Extending from this, is the other thing I have …. this total full on proper irrational fear of death.

Total fear.

Not… oh dear one day I’m going to die, ah well…. but

I can’t actually think about death without having to practically verbally or physically stop myself from thinking about it when I start to panic.

I’ve always thought that it’s probably because I don’t believe in anything after life.

I don’t believe in a God – I don’t believe in an afterlife. I can’t explain why and I certainly don’t judge or mock those that do.. I just don’t.

The trouble is then, that when I think about the fact that one day I will die.. I have nothing to fall back on.

No buffer, no safety zone.

No ‘I’ll be looking down on you’ or ‘I’ll be waiting’ ..”I’ll be back..’ No fluffy white cloud to sleep on.. … … just nothing.

I kind of believe that people live on in the memories of others. That’s how we keep people alive … by keeping them remembered. And talked about. And loved. Cherished. Laughed about.. Fondly ..

But when I think about death… I start to feel my heart rate rise and I can feel utter panic rising.

One day I won’t be here.

I’ll leave my family…. my beautiful girls, my soul mate and maybe my brother and sister etc. etc. and that’s it.

No coming back from that. I can’t watch. I can’t observe, I can’t reminisce.

I’m just.. not.

How can I protect if I’m not here?

Most times when I accidentally find myself on that train of thought.. I feel scared. I have to literally say to myself, ‘stop thinking about that.’.. and push it out of my brain.
Spiraling thoughts that you have to physically control …

I remember this thing from university once where we were learning about adrenaline. It’s the worst hormone, it gives you that ‘pit falling out of your stomach feeling’ that makes your heart skip a beat and your palms sweaty while you feel the colour draining from your face as nervousness and trepidation rises like cold water..

But.. I remember this one thing. (we were talking about phobias) they were saying that some treatments and therapists believe in shock therapy to treat phobias and that shoving someone into close proximity with their irrational fear (and thus proving that nothing happened to them) was a great way of treating someone’s irrational fear.

The reason being that even if you were shit scared. Like the most scared you’ve ever been in your life – in a shedful of spiders, you had to calm down eventually.

Adrenaline is a hormone. It runs out. Its effect wears off and it’s physically impossible to remain at that heightened sense of fear for any extended length of time.

Even with adrenalin coursing through your body…

You have to calm down. It’s inevitable.

The anxiety has to go away because your body can’t sustain it for long even if your brain wanted it to.

So what I need is someone to come along and shove me in a big shed with Death and then I’ll be fine!!

kind of just makes me think of Bill and Ted though!! he he 😆

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. March 10, 2007 12:18 am

    I have the same fear about death, I *know* I’m going to die in a car crash when I’m not the one driving. I also have the same fear about someon breaking into the house at night to kill me. If I hear a noise at night that I cannot immediately explain to my content, then I can make myself sick with the fear. Noises in the house at night can actually wake me with a jump from a deep sleep! It started when I was first in the house alone over night when I was 18 and I can’t stop it! I’m bad enough with other adults in the house but alone or with just Charlie, I am a basket case!

  2. March 10, 2007 1:03 am

    I don’t worry about myself so much as my family.

  3. March 10, 2007 8:48 am

    I have a thing about my family too but weirdly not my girls. I don’t like to know if someone in my family is on a long drive for example.. I just want to know when they’re back or ‘there’.. I haven’t really associated anything with my children except the fear that I’ll fall downstairs while I’m holding them. That really started when Rowan was born because my mum told me a story of how she fell downstairs whilst carrying me.
    She was holding a tub of sudocrem and when she righted herself at the bottom the end of a sawn off radiator pipe (decorating an old house) had punctured the bottom of the sudocrem, right under my head. She said how it was fate (as she saw it) that made her pick up the cream and how if she hadn’t, things could have been very different.

    Very typical of my mum but also now typical of me. I have this worry that I may not do the one thing that I should have done that wil prevent something from happening to someone. Not the same as my ‘fear’ of dying.. both feel pretty awesome but very different from each other.

  4. March 16, 2007 11:30 am

    i’m so glad i made it to your blog tonight, Greer. there’s something so incredibly wonderful about you. your girls and BN are very blessed. x.

  5. March 16, 2007 6:40 pm

    Hey phobodo

    So glad you made it here too …

    for you chook 😉 x

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