July 12, 2010

I hereby decree…

“The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” is really really true!

Alright, everyone, time for a little life advice from the Fortress!

A year ago yesterday, I was walking around my neighborhood, when I passed a man walking his small white dog, when for no reason the stupid dog bit me on the back of my thigh. Ouch! Man didn’t seem to give a shit, and I forgot to get his name or info. So, as I mentioned briefly in last year’s 100 Days of Summer recap, I spent the following week in absolute panic that the dog had given me rabies or something. Yeah, I know, stupid thing to be panicked about, despite everyone and all information I looked up essentially telling me how there was like no chance. Only got out of the panic a week later when I saw the dog being walked again (rabid dogs are dead within a couple of days of symptoms, the only time they can spread it, so this dog had to of course be alright). Didn’t snap out of the panic right away. It took me another couple days to slowly come down from it.

And that week was seriously miserable. Regardless of it being for a stupid reason, I was still panicked, still absolutely filled with fear. And let me tell you something. Fear seriously fucks you UP. You can’t think. You lose your marbles. No amount of logical reasoning showing you not to be scared will snap you out of it. Pretty much just has to go away on its own after a while. Anything I had been thinking about or planning up until that asshole little dog bit me had gone out of my mind. Pretty much all I could think about was this dog bite and my irrational fear of infection.

And that’s why fear itself is a worthwhile thing to be afraid of! I sometimes find there are events or possible events in the future that I think “oh, wow, I’m going to be soooo scared!” For example, if I ever get pregnant. Pregnancy is pretty goddamn scary. Aside from all the crazy shit involved with it even when it’s perfectly normal, if I’m ever pregnant, I would be soooooo terrified! Scared waiting to find out if pregnant. Scared during labor. Scared waiting for labor at any moment. And then of course the most terrifying thing of all for which pregnancy is just the opening, parenthood! Ack!

So I would say, well, don’t be scared, but it can’t be helped. That’s another reason to fear it, since it’s hard to avoid. Education may help, in that fear preys on ignorance, since not knowing what to do in a given situation only increases the fear, while knowing what to do keeps it somewhat at bay, usually.

And your brain is on your side anyway. It gets bored with fear after a while, provided the fear brings nothing new to be fearful about, and logical reasoning grows back. So while you can’t avoid being fearful, because, well, shit happens, you can at least be ready for it and knock it out quickly. Or at least manage until it passes.

Happy Fifty-Fifty! 🙂

This has been Day 50 of the 100 Days of Summer, Round 10.