People deal with fear every single day of their lives. From the fear of the unknown and what it may or may not bring to the more specific fear categorized as a phobia which has the ability to actively influence our behaviors based on trying to avoid such a concern. Dictionary.com defines fear as a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined; the feeling or condition of being afraid. Generally, I consider fear a survival mechanism built in to help us stay alive by compelling us to be afraid of things that could harm or kill us. From an evolutionary aspect, that makes a world of sense when one thinks about a person’s reaction to say, a large carnivorous predator that would consider us as prey, but makes far less sense when fear is more personalized, a la the fear of buttons.
Like most of us, I have a healthy respect/fear for things that could actively kill me such as aforementioned large carnivorous predators I would much prefer not to meet in a one on one setting, however I actively seek out things that many would consider me daft for doing. The more tame activities you could consider as riding extreme roller coasters and driving fast but I would ultimately love to go bungee jumping and sky diving. I don’t consider a general fear of death as particularly valid since we’re all going to die at some point, but far be it from me to judge. Given my taste for activities that tend to make one’s heart rush, you would think I wouldn’t be afflicted by ‘lesser’ fears, I guess you could call them for lack of a better term or descriptor, but for the majority of my life, with the exception of performing, I have been afraid of being noticed or drawing attention to myself. Put me on stage or in the ring to compete or perform and I am good to go, but set me in the midst of people as no one other than myself and I suddenly have a problem… I have no good or valid reason for this; no experience that drove me to become a wallflower and fade into the background quite successfully. Being classified as an introvert could be part of it but I also consider that the easy way out and I’ve always liked a good challenge after all.
For the path I have chosen to follow and for what I want to do, I have finally conceded that I will simply have to do something about that rather aggravating fear. I have decided to challenge myself to grow yet again. I tend to think I am a perpetual work in progress and I would be the first to admit that I’m a bit rough around the edges in terms of a final product, but I’m getting there, one tiny step at a time. Recently, a very good friend of mine looked at my blog and gave me a series of questions that immediately came to mind when he read it. They had nothing to do with the actual posts and everything to do with what really matters. I can give the excuse that I’m new (which I am) and that I’m just starting (which is also true to blogging) but aside from the ‘About Me’ link on the page he was correct in that I really didn’t do much else to introduce myself. Why am I here? That was perhaps one of the more poignant questions and that is the one I wanted to reflect upon most at present.
As an aspiring author, especially in today’s world, it is very important to put yourself out there; to become known for something…anything. So, as suggested by Writer’s Market, I decided to finally start a blog. I would imagine there are tons of other better reasons to begin something but one has to start somewhere and I found, after having posted my first entries and having said friend take a look, that there was more than one reason to start it. For years, I’ve been afraid of what others will think; of me, of what I write, of things I like, etc. I finally came to the conclusion not that long ago that not everyone is going to like what I might create, for any number of various reasons, but that is simply not a good enough reason to do nothing. (And the last horse finally crosses the finish line!) In another conversation that I had with my roommate, she made the comment that, ‘If you do nothing, then nothing will happen.’ It was not a statement that was directed at me but it was definitely something I could take to heart. That combined with the post I read a couple of days ago titled CHASE YOUR FUCKING DREAMS, I decided that I wanted to face this rather aggravating fear and do something about it. I do not simply want to survive, having successfully made it to the end of my days with nothing to show for it. I want to be remembered for something other than simply getting by and growing old.
So here I am. Aside from the suggestion from Writer’s Market, I am here to face at least one of my fears. The most recent and rather overwhelming fear inducing knowledge of learning my mother has cancer is not one I can do a great deal about so I figure I’ll work on something I can change. Instead of just sitting back, I think I would prefer to worry about what others might say in a different way; comments, praise, flames, criticism…some response to validate that I’m here…that I’m actively putting myself out for anybody to see. The only response worse than any of the above is no response at all and that is exactly what I have been settling for. Once more, I would like to say Hello World! I’m here and you may not like or care about what I have to say or share, but I’m going to anyway. I can only hope that somewhere along the way, I’ll find others to share my adventures with and who will help to conquer this fear with me. Thank you!