There are times that fear can grip me in a tight embrace of hell. There are those fears of not having enough or not being enough that flow into me unbidden from a slight bump in the road. Cruelty sent in my direction, from anyone, will trigger experiences I have had in the past with ridicule and hate. I know it well. I have automatic coping mechanisms for this. I run with the force of escaping with my very life.
There was a time when that was the only way to survive. Now I can stop, face my fears and know that I am no longer alone. But, I don’t. “Ridiculous girl.” was what my mom called me when I had flights of fantasy in my writing, acting or thoughts in general. I imagined someday one of the stories in my head would peak my mother’s interest enough to listen and possibly give a compliment or, at the very least, a kind comment.
A virtual whirlwind of dark voices can envelope me. Tirades of ridicule, “How dare you try? What were you thinking? Stay small. You ridiculous girl.” The beauty of our growth comes from trying those things anyway. The possibilities come from thinking those stories through anyway. To not stay small long enough that someone finally sees us is the key. Ridiculous to one person is wonderful to another. We begin to seek out people in our lives who support us no matter how we show up in the moment.
When I find myself being pulled into the undertow of someone else’s life, losing my footing instead of focusing on my own welfare, danger is around the bend. It is when I try my best for someone else that I call myself a ridiculous girl. My best seems not good enough for the other person and, yet again, I say, “No good deed goes unpunished.”
Reminded by Julia Cameron, author of The Artist’s Way, “Abundance is not rooted in our checkbooks. It is rooted in our system of checks and balances: the care we expend on ourselves versus the care we expend on others; the light heart we gain from pursuing our dreams versus the darkened heart that comes from keeping company with our fears.” So, goodbye fear, my ‘sometimes constant’ companion. I will not miss you.
Debra Whittam is the author of “I'm I Going to be Ok?" For any media inquiries or questions please contact: Contact@DebraWhittam.com