I write a lot about fear because we all face it and I’ve spent the last several years acknowledging mine. Facing our fears is the soul’s great journey. If you don’t think you have fears, it may be because you’ve created a life of comfort in order to avoid facing your fears. We all do this to some degree because we are not taught about the inner journey of life. We learn to face our physical fears, like of jumping off a high dive, or asking someone on a date. Many of us are afraid to speak to large crowds of people, but in random situations we discover ourselves doing just that several times throughout our lives. But what about the fear of following our greatest desires due to sacrifices we would have to make? What about the fear of leaving someone whom you love because the relationship simply isn’t enhancing your life any longer? What about the fears that tell us we are irresponsible if we don’t buy into them? I have fears that tell me I’m an irresponsible fool if I think of anything other than how bad things truly are. Those are the gripping, self-defeating fears that eat us alive and deprive us of any joy. We have been taught that if we think positive during really bad times, that we are being delusional, so we get stuck in the vortex of that self-defeating fear, which brings up a lot of anger, anxiety and holds us back from triumphant experiences.
The other night I had a recurring dream that I was back in high school. I had missed several classes and couldn’t recall my locker combo. Anxiety overcame me as I tried to figure out which class I was supposed attend and when I realized that I was probably going to fail because I hadn’t been attending any classes. In front of my locker, where I struggled to remember numbers, my friends surrounded me to show me the way to class. Suddenly I recalled that I had already graduated high school. “Wait a minute,” I announced to my friends. “I have already done this. I’ve already graduated and got my diploma. What am doing here? I should be out in the world making something of my life.” Relief overwhelmed me as I stood up and understood my worth. I didn’t need to be there. I was recycling something I had already accomplished.
In my waking life, it is very clear to me what this dream represents. In a few months from now, I will either have to be making a lot more money, or I will have to move (again) from this beautiful cottage home that I so love living in. I share the cost of rent with a former boyfriend, but we broke up while we were living here. I could have remained in the relationship in order to keep myself financially secure, but I can’t live in that kind of lie. Not anymore. A few years ago it would have suited me fine, but that kind of fraudulence ends poorly and costs a lot in the self-esteem department. At this very moment, I have no place to go. There is nothing available in my price range. My daughter is thriving in school and I’m doing excellent in my job. I know we are supposed to be here and I trust that when the time comes, I will be provided for. I’ve been in this situation before (so many times. If I told you how many times, you would think I should have jumped off a bridge by now). From experience, I know that things always work out, but in the past, I’ve resisted the experience with enthusiasm, and spent several months locked in my fear, stressed to the point of physical pain, and miserable during moments when I should have felt quite happy. I’m not doing that this time. I’ve been here before. I’ve seen how it all pans out. I’m well aware that I will be taken care of and that my back is covered by a loving and supportive universe that knows exactly what I need and when I need it. I’m walking in the light of knowing that we are going to be ok. No matter how things turn out, we will have a roof over our heads and it will be even better than what we have going on now. I trust this because I’ve lived it. The difference now is that I’m not sinking into my fear of not having a place to live. I’m living my life to the fullest and loving each moment. I am not worried, and I don’t have to be, no matter how irresponsible my inner judge tells me I’m being.
We used to sing this song at church… “I’ve got peace like a river… I’ve got love like the ocean…” It was a rich song. I still sing it sometimes. It reminds me that I have a choice each day to either walk in the darkness of my fears, or to wake up and be alive in the light of my knowing that in this very moment, everything is excellent. The world is not crumbling down around me. Things up ahead may seem bleak and scary, but right now I have peace like a river, and I am filled with love like the ocean. I could very well sing the song of my fears and it would sound something like, “I’ve got anxiety like an endless void… I’ve got fear like a murky pond…” but I’m not resisting life anymore. I’m not afraid to stand up in this very moment and love where I am. This time around, I’m going to do something different. I’ve been here before. I do not have to go through this again. I’m taking the soul’s path out of the forest of fear into the land of freedom of knowing that everything is going to be alright. In fact, it’s going to be spectacular!