My Greatest Fear

I enjoy seeing what the gang at WordPress serve up every day in their Daily Prompt and I found today’s particularly intriguing after the events of the past two days in my life.

You’re locked in a room with your greatest fear. Describe what’s in the room.

My room is empty.  There are no spiders, no airplanes, no clowns.  All my fears lie within.

On Monday I received an email that, in part, fulfilled a pie-in-the-sky goal of mine. The email was a call to action: I had to write a piece revealing a complicated and personal issue.  If you’ve ever read my blog or any of my freelance work you would probably think this is easy for me.  I have revealed intimate details about my post-partum body, struggles with my identity, and my parenting challenges.  For the most part you would be right in thinking this isn’t a big deal.  I enjoy sharing my stories and I am comfortable putting myself out there for others to judge.  This assignment, however, was different for one reason:  the stakes were high in my mind.

What if I can’t make the piece come together?

This topic is trivial and unworthy of any attention.

I wish I had offered to write about X, Y, Z.

The writing is flat.

I’m all over the place.

I bit off more than I can chew.

I should just throw in the towel now.

This is terrible and I don’t know how to make it better.

I will be revealed as the worst writer ever.

She will regret ever giving me a shot.

I’m a fraud.

I will submit a piece that will never be published.  This of course means I can never write again and I might as well pack up my computer and call it a life.

I could go on for hours but I think you get the picture.  This should have been a really happy moment in my life, but as it morphed into reality from my dreams, it looked scary and distorted.

All my life I have been compelled, and encouraged, to shoot for the stars.  I will not let fear stop me from pursuing my goals.  Instead I charge at my dreams, full steam ahead.  It’s the achieving them that always trips me up.  The self-doubt paralyzes me.  Regret overcomes me.  I beg opportunities to come knocking, but once they are at the door I want to hide in a closet until they go away.

On this blog I often share the good things that are happening in my life.  I share my accomplishments with pride and that’s all very real.  What I don’t always share is the doubts, the fears, the struggles I have in getting there.  If you think the world throws me no obstacles, you can rest assured I excel at throwing many a tire, tree branch, and boulder in front of me on the road I travel.

Trapped in a room with your greatest fear, describe what’s in the room.  

Standing 5’4 with a slight frame, reddish-olive skin, brown eyes, and short brown hair.  My greatest fear is just being me.


16 thoughts on “My Greatest Fear

  1. This is a good reminder about fears, especially about writing. I love this prompt too. I am terrified of being myself because EXPOSURE. EXPOSURE. EXPOSURE. also, I may be a little bit of an asshole.

  2. You done writ what’s all up in mah head. The only person in the room with me is this skinny black wench who keeps telling me “no one will like what you’ve written.” The worst part? I usually listen to her.

  3. Oh how you’ve spoken to me. I had the same internal dialogue unfurl itself at me in the shower today. Thank you for giving me the push I needed. You go, girl!

  4. Oh my…so much of what you wrote has gone through my head as well. I’ve heard a few times that success and/or getting what you want can be scarier than failure, as I’ve grown I’ve come to really understand what that means. It can be empowering though too – if I am really the one holding me back, creating fear and drama in my own mind than I have the power to get out of the way, take a deep breath, push past the fear and self doubt and see that the world won’t end. P.s. – I love your writing, you are so much better than you know :)

  5. I once read a great article about banishing that inner bitch by creating a team of cheerleaders who adore you no matter what and who cheer your successes and your striving and your flaws and your…you get the picture. The author said to compile a list of those people and spend 30 minutes every day with them, whether in person, email, on the phone…whatever. And my inner bitch laughed and said, “How stupid, nobody would ever put up with you for 30 minutes a day.” So I never tried.
    But it sounded really good, for people who aren’t total annoying, insipid, unredeemed, creative failures, like me.
    Oh, hey, wait a minute, I see how this scary inner critic thing works! Quite well, is how.

  6. I just want to hide under the covers. I’m scared to death of moving. The struggle, the fight is much more comfortable than the win. Maybe I’ll calm down with some wine! Very well written, as always!

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