I’m struggling with how to explore this word. It would be too easy to point fingers, saying, ‘Look, there it is, over there in that person with their ideology’ or ‘Look over there, at the way that she controls hers’. There’s an awful lot of that going around. How easy…and self-righteous…that would be.

The truth is that it’s harder for me to acknowledge my own fears.  Is this hubris? Denial?  Is it self-protection… not wanting to expose, even to myself, this place of deep vulnerability?

My lack of recognition feels somehow different to me than simply refusing to ‘face my fears’, for to be able to face them would mean to know they exist and then to intentionally look them in the eye (not so much with overpowering strength, but with the power of compassion, the way that one captures the eye of a hurting person to let them see your tender concern)  But my fears feel dark and shadowy, unknown, and so likely control me terribly because of that.DSCF0230

And perhaps this gives me a clue, the places where I lack freedom may indicate that I am quite frightened. So, what am I afraid of? ……………………..

????? ………… ??????……..

Okay. Here is one, of course. This is not at all a brand new awareness for me, not exactly a blind terror,  but one I have been gradually exposing to the light now for very many years. As I continue to gently turn it over each time I become aware that I am being buried by it , it has gradually become softer, easier to love. Still, isn’t it curious that my knowledge of its presence in me settles back into the darkness of my unconscious again so completely?  It makes me wonder what else is there.

I am afraid of the judgments of others and rejection, especially by those that I love. That makes me act in crazy, codependent, and self-limiting ways in order to not incur loss, dancing some strange come close, pull away tango, as I strive to be who I am and then run back to who I think I should be. It’s not that I fear being alone (at least, I don’t think so, but there is that darkness again) I think it’s more that I fear being invisible, being unloved.

Ah, but therein lies the crux, doesn’t it? For if a woman behaves in a way that ensures that those whom she loves will never reject her, then is she not already invisible?? And if she suppresses parts of herself… her desires, her dreams, her anger, her pain… in order to be loved, is she really being loved at all?

Perhaps our need for security has two faces. One face fears that the ‘other’ will intrude and so wants to impose restrictions, limiting access with locks and guns and laws and walls…external or internal.  The other face fears that the ‘other’ will abandon and so imposes limits on self, walling the self into an image of acceptability.  In either scenario the great grief I suppose is that we have forgotten that we all belong.

There is a lot of ‘othering’ of Fear these days….’Fear-based’, ‘Fear-mongering’ is slung like so much mud..  We label the other as living, believing, acting out of Fear, as if that is a dirty word, the ultimate in denigration, when it is merely a part of being human. It belongs to each of us and to all of us.

Some of us fear being controlled, while others fear losing control.  Perhaps instead of pointing fingers, we could try capturing one another’s eyes and extending our tender concern. I know that this sounds polyanna-ish, (and THIS is a label that my gift often gets slapped with)  but I expect that until we are able to hear it, it will continue to hide in the dark.




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