What I Could Do With Fear...

Yesterday I took my daughter to the beach where we spent the day being relaxed and happy. This is interesting because #1 I hate the sand #2 I don't like cold water #3 The ocean scares me. What I do know, though, is that as soon as we arrived at the beach my daughter couldn't keep her eyes off the waves. She has the beginnings of fear. Each time the waves came up she would hear it and look tentatively over her shoulder, sometimes voicing her concern that the water was going to come up and get her. I knew she had this small egg of fear sitting on her shoulder just waiting for the right time to hatch and take over her happy memories of beach time. I have had that same egg find it's way to me and it hatched a long time ago and there has been a black bird of fright sitting on my shoulder whispering in my ear ever since. When I was young I thought I was drowning. Now my mother says I only dipped under water for a second but in my small child's mind it was near death and frightening enough to linger into adulthood. Each time I go into the ocean I have to talk myself out of the irrational worries that grow increasingly louder with each step I take into the water. I am of the mindset that I need to go further though so that those fear shoutings will not control me. So on this sunny day with my daughter I decided to take her into the water and clutch her tightly to me, tell her "Momma is holding you tight!" and show her what fun those waves can be. First we started with me knee deep and as she got more comfortable we would go out a bit further. Each time a wave crashed around my waist she would scream half out of fright and half out of excitement all the while I would say "Momma has you tight!" Eventually she was ready. She wanted down in the water to let the waves crash upon herself. She wanted the joy of feeling the pull and tug and push of the swirling currents and knowing that she was keeping herself upright. Finally I knew that we had dislodged the place of that fear egg from her shoulder when the wave swept my daughters feet out from under her and her hands tugged on mine and her face didn't look up at me in panic but in utter joy and with a wide mouth full of laughter. It was looking at that face that made me thankful that I wasn't handing my fears down to her. I am not passing on something that she will unknowingly have on her back for the rest of her life. I am reminded that there are so many people who are affected by our actions, our selfishness, our fears, our insecurities. Each person we touch with those things then touches someone else with them and on and on they reach out their tree like arms into the world. Instead how about passing on love, joy, peace, happiness, selflessness. Let's look into our loved ones faces and see a wide mouth full of laughter...


Posted on September 26, 2010 and filed under Anything and Everything.