“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan

7.29.2008

The scared girl

I dream all the time of almost traveling, of almost walking through doors. But I never do. I pack my luggage, I count the days on my calendar, I see in my dream-mind's eye the blue, blue water of my almost-destination, but I never go. I am always scared. The planes are always too big, and they always fly at night, and I never go. I get to the airport, I get on the plane, but I never go. It is always a place over the ocean, I will always be gone too long, and I always want to go, but I never do. I am always scared. I am the scared girl.

And so it is in life. I am the scared girl. I have always been the scared girl. I have always been afraid to open those doors. But those doors beckon. And some of them have windows & I can see what's behind them, and it's fabulous. I have to say goodbye to the scared girl, but when I do, who will I be? It's a struggle to let her go - she's been with me all my life - but she feels tired & ready to rest. Can I be brave? Can I just keep her with me, let her see all those wonderful things beyond those doors? Can I hold her close & whisper that it's okay, that I'm safe? Can I be brave? Can I fly?

"You haven't seen a tree until you've seen its shadow from the sky."
                                   ~ Amelia Earhart


15 comments:

  1. You have nothing to lose - the scared girl will still be with you, just behind the new brave one that has emerged. Good luck!

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  2. Breda - Yes indeedy. I am ready.

    Littlebyrd - You are so right. She's there; I don't need to feel guilty for letting her go. I feel so responsible for that scared girl, for allowing her to grow & become who she is, that I feel an odd sense of guilt about saying goodbye. After all, it's not HER fault I let her run my life. LOL! How neurotic is THAT?!

    :) Debi

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  3. You will be who are now but less scared and with another layer added on. It's no different than that moment before you dive into a swimming pool. The longer you hesitate and think about it, the harder it is to dive and. And then fear talkes it's hold. Best not to think too long and dive in. The water is just fine! ; )

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  4. Puala - I KNOW you're right. Don't think, don't think, don't think. Pretend I'm a baseball pitcher. Don't think.

    :) Debi

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  5. It's a beautiful thing that you have chosen to embrace this scared little girl in you, rather than judge her. That's half the battle, isn't it?
    Baby steps my dear friend...
    (I coexist with a scared little girl too...but we are learning to ....OH MY GOD...WE JUST HAD A LITTLE EARTHQUAKE AS I AM WRITING THIS...my heart is pounding!!!! I am in a house all by myself with this little dog and the whole house just started shaking...now my hands are shaking.
    Yes, we are learning to embrace the fear..holy cow.

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  6. Actually what a wonderful dream you are having, life is offering you so much!!

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  7. I too, live with a scared little girl within...she's never flown(the mere thought causes a full-fledged anxiety attack!)...doesn't swim...is frightened by heights...success...you name it...she fears it. I am holding her hand though, and working through things...one at a time.

    (It helps that my husband has promised to fulfill my dream of visiting the UK when I conquer my fear of flight. :)

    I think you are approaching this in such a great way...you'll get there!
    xo

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  8. paula's metaphor made me remember something i hadn't thought of in forever.....we had a backyard in-ground swimming pool when i was growing up and every single summer for 10 years i would repeat this agonizing ritual of wanting to dive off the diving board head first... :) and each summer i would take day after agonizing day trying to build up the courage. talking to myself, calling to my mother to watch, running forward and running backward, crying and yelling. my sisters so wanted to throw me off that board i'll tell you. it must have been upsetting for everybody to watch. more like irritating :) my parents would encourage, cajole, demonstrate, try to hold my hand. nothing helped at all. i was completely terrified. and then one day i would finally go off the deep end and plunge into the water head first. and i would pretend i was doing these graceful swan dives and that everyone watched and clapped. and you know what? that diving board was about 6 inches above the edge of the pool. i could reach down and touch the water. it was my perception that had become my reality. a scared little gilr who didn't like to try new things. and then the reverse would be true. i was a graceful and brave girl who could dive. i still hold that girls hand whenever i have to do something with heights involved. she is unreasonably scared she will fall but together we manage.

    where is it you would like to travel out your front door debi?

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  9. Jaime - OMG! What a perfectly perfect subject to be talking about when an earthquake hits! That is serendipity of the scary kind! Holy cow indeed!

    :) Debi

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  10. Michelle - You're really right. It's so goofy to be scared when life is offering so much. This really IS a wonderful dream.

    Cookie - You make me blush! But I like it!

    Enchanted - That horrible, horrible anxiety. I get so mad at it. And I get mad at the scared girl within me also. it's a hard fight. One at a time is the only way I can face things. Sometimes 2 steps forward & 1 step back, but still, I keep trying to make that step. When i do, I'll visualize you there taking that step with me. We're all in this show together.

    Love, Debi

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  11. Oh Robin. Everywhere. I dream of Africa & Ireland & India, India, India. Back to the SW desert of the United States. Antarctica! The stars! I'd like to cross the ocean in my own boat, with just my cat for company. San Antonio - it's highly underrated.

    Re: the diving in thing. My very post on this blog is called "One Toe in the Water" & features a painting about magic. The title comes from a song by Norah Jones, which I SO relate to. On her 2nd cd.

    :) Debi

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  12. oh debi, i totally can relate. I could have written this post myself. I just had a very long conversation with my sister while she was visiting me here in chicago about how I'm always so scared. scared of everything. i hate it. But work through it. step by step. pretend to be brave, even when i'm not.

    you are probably more brave than you think you are.

    xo

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  13. Bridgette - See? I find it so HARD to believe YOU could ever be scared. Your stuff is so wonderful & feels so assured, so confident. Somehow, this knowledge makes me feel better. More normal.

    That sounds bad, but I mean it in a good way.

    Thank you.
    :) Debi

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