All of us stumble over our fears. As I still do walking up most every flight of stairs, I must give attention to my feet. If I do not, I tend to catch the tip of a shoe on the edge of a step. If I were to focus in on just the pain my shin or knee might feel, I wouldn’t be walking any stairwell. Rather, like most of us, I have done well at facing into my innate fear of hurting myself, using it to correct problem causing behaviors.
First, my potential is having a seizure anytime and anywhere. Second, I know of my mild and episodic balance problems. Third, and so much like the rest of us, I know I could just stumble without either of my medical problems being the culprit. So then, I am taking in hand a normal patch of fears, concerns and worries making those useful.
I, only kind of, remember when dad first put me in the saddle, I was terrified. I was a 5 year old boy and even though I’d watched and longed for the chance to do as dad did, I was scared. He didn’t let me get away with it and I began learning to ride needing my dad’s hands around me. It wasn’t long before I was ridding out across the pastures with him. Then a couple of years later was saddling my horse and checking our cattle without him.
Even though I’d longed to be in the saddle, like dad, when he put me there for the first time, I was terrified. This hands on dealing with fears set me on the path of feasting on fears. I do not relish on my own or others fears, rather I’ve learned to face into mine, first.
“Through the action of fear the soul is purified and, as it were, made malleable and so it becomes awakened to the action of love.” ~ St Diadochos of Photiki
Only as I came into my thirties did I come to understand how powerfully those childhood experiences had shaped my personality. Other’s pain and fears do not reach into me as I had learned to expect. While I can still cry or feel stark apprehension those and their common family didn’t and still don’t keep me from the too common human experiences.
“If we could read the secret history of our enemies we would find in each man’s sorrow and suffering enough to disarm all hostility.” ~ Henry Wordsworth Longfellow