I’ve been thinking a lot lately about Fear, with a capital F. I know I keep going on about my skiing trip, but it taught me that I have a lot of fear inside me and I don’t want to be a person who is afraid all the time.
Fear stops us achieving certain things. It can make us unhappy. So we need to face up to any fears we have and meet them head on – only then can we deal with them constructively.
As part of this process, I decided to write a few of my fears down. Try it – you’ll realise that some of them are silly, some of them are very real but that many of them can be dealt with.
- That I will lose my children. I’m not sure if my heart would recover.
- That someone I love will be a victim of violent crime.
- That I will never reach my full potential.
- That I will die of cancer, like my Mum.
- That we will have to leave South Africa and live elsewhere in the world.
Those are just some of them, but it felt good to write them down. I was inspired by an email I received a few days ago from an American woman named Heather. When she was 36 (and just a few months after giving birth to her daughter), she was diagnosed with mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer caused by asbestos. As a child she used to wear her Dad’s work coat but it was covered in asbestos from his construction job and this resurfaced years later and made her very very ill. She was told she had just over a year to live.
To try and save her life, she had a WHOLE LUNG removed. Can you imagine the fear? On top of the fear that your baby girl would be left without you? Heather is one brave woman and she’s started an initiative to raise awareness about this particular kind of cancer and to help other people face their fears. Read more about it, write down a list of your fears and then face them, head on.
P.S: On a lighter note, I’ve always had a fear of having shorter hair, because when I was a teenager I chopped it all off and everyone thought I was a boy;) But yesterday I felt brave and got my hair cut into a short bob – I feel lighter and liberated and ready to tackle this year.