So what if I never jump out of a plane ... I finally boarded one without the comfort of a companion. Who cares if I never give a speech in front of thousands ... I've given several for rooms of one hundred. And if I never make the top of the NYT bestseller list? Well, I might not be perfectly happy about that, but I have broken my self-imposed restrictions on what I could and could not write. How freeing! Calling these achievements 'feats' may be laughable to some, I'm sure. Others might relate to them as worthy goals. Still, other people might find them bold and beyond their own abilities. We're all different; I met a woman who had no problem rock climbing to dizzying heights, but don't put her near a cricket!
As much as I know I have nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to topics and situations that sit beyond my comfort zone, I came across a fear this weekend that completely pissed me off.
I went cabin camping. There were frogs. IN the cabin. IN the restrooms. Lots of them. Technically, I don't fear frogs. Actually, I find most of them adorable. I just don't want to see one hop at me when I lift a toilet seat. I don't want to sleep with them in the dark where they can use me as a trampoline.
It was sort of a women's retreat and there were three of us in the cabin. At first, two of us were ready to hit the hay, the third nowhere in sight. So there I was in a sleeping bag, on the top bunk, surrounded by frogs and lizards, wondering what sat on the ledge above me just below the roof. (I didn't look.) I knew the lizards would keep to themselves, and the small spiders seemed harmless enough, but the little frogs? They would suddenly bound off the walls across the room. To our credit, the other woman and I finally talked ourselves down from the fear and were actually drifting off to sleep. After all, the third woman--the seasoned pro--would return soon and hopefully have the guts to catch the frogs and release them outside.
But no! When she arrived she freaked out over the frogs, promptly became a landing target for two, and left to sleep in her pickup truck. That was it for me. I hunkered down low and--after at least an hour--had the sort of sleep where you wake about every half hour. I sweltered in my sleeping bag and wanted to climb out of it, but it was my only protection from the frogs. So I sweat through the night, quaked in fear, and listened to my lower bunk mate sleeping soundly most of the night.
And that's why I'm mad at myself: My sleeping bag was protection? From the frogs? What did I think they would do to me, anyway? I mean I owned a snake once. The fear was almost as silly as that rock climber and her crickets.
I suppose that's why we need to be gentle with each other, friends. We never know the extent of someone's fears ... of their comfort zones. They might not always make sense, but they are real enough to the person in question.
So I guess I can say, I might never be comfortable in a cabin full of frogs. BUT ... at least I can also say I didn't sleep in a truck all night because of them?
What are your irrational fears? Come on! Own em! :) I promise I won't laugh.