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What is there to Fear but Fear itself?

Updated on August 10, 2013

Is it the outcome or the journey?

Fear is an interesting disposition. There is no emotion more powerful and potentially destructive. Fear paralyzes or it brings out the most aggressive in us. But what are we most afraid of? The outcome or the journey?

When I was ten years old my father wanted me to jump off of the high dive at a lake front swimming area. I don’t know why it was so important to him that I do this but it was and the more I refused, the angrier he got at me. He told me ‘don’t worry, I will be at the bottom waiting for you…I won’t let you drown…’ So, scared out of my mind, I climbed to the top of the diving board. My stomach was lurching and my senses were dulled. It was like I was in haze. To make matters worse, there were kids climbing the ladder behind me and I was frozen at the top. My father was going back and forth between cajoling and harping, telling these kids to sit tight, I was going to jump. Crying I walked to the end of the board and looked down. At that moment I realized I had one of two choices, jump and get it over with or pass out and fall into the water unconscious. I decided jumping was the best choice of those two options. So I did. My father was ecstatic with joy, telling me…’see you did it! Aren’t you proud of yourself? You walked through your fear and now look, you’ll never be afraid of jumping the high dive again!’ Well, my father was wrong about that. I didn’t jump off of a high dive again until I was in my late twenties and then only once.

I wasn’t afraid of drowning, I could swim and swim well…I knew I would not drown. I was afraid of the feeling of jumping from that height; the butterflies in my stomach and the sensation of falling. In other words, the outcome did not frighten nearly as much as the journey through it.

Justifiable Fear

Our country is in a lot of fear right now…fear of the changes taking place and although most of us know that we will all survive and deal with what we have to deal with, the journey will be uncomfortable. Everything we thought we knew is being challenged, our ideals, our sense of security and our sense of health/wellness…all being threatened.

We trusted our medical system and now an emergency room visit of three hours can cost $6,000. That is NOT an exaggeration. My son, who works but does not receive insurance benefits, went to the emergency room for a sinus infection and this was his final bill after three hours. He told me, ‘Mom, don’t I have a right to good medical care? I cannot afford this.’ He’s right on both counts.

We trusted our banks and they took advantage of their customers through predatory loans and outrageous tactics and to top things off began to ship jobs to other countries as a means to gain more money and pay less for labor. I guess it didn’t occur to them that many of the Americans they laid off paid mortgages. Oops…not looking too far ahead I guess. They get their bail-outs, take the money and run. Short-sales are failing left and right because banks would rather foreclose, I still don’t understand that but it is happening, I’m sure they are gaining something.

Many people believe we will be a territory of China soon. Many people from other countries are buying our properties because right now they can get them dirt cheap. I would be more inclined to believe we will be a territory of Canada before we are a territory of China. There are a lot of Canadians buying our properties. Not that they don’t have a right to, I would if I was in their position. If you can pay cash for a property…go for it.

We have been waiting for Congress to come up with a plan in both the health industry and the banking industry but they are too busy arguing. The Democrats and Republicans squabbling like parents in an overblown custody battle. All the while, the votes (people) they are arguing over are still waiting for a solution.

Sooner or Later...everybody's kingdom must end (Elton John)

So we can walk through our fear, find new ways of doing things and embrace change.Americans are strong and we are not as afraid of the outcome as much as the journey and yes, it is a painful process. What is happening now in our country is akin to the meaning of the Tower in tarot. Before anything can be better, the old must be torn down to the ground. That includes old thought patterns, ways of doing business, ways of seeing our is time for new and better ideas, not rebuilding and rebuilding the old. This isn’t something to see as bad or good, it is a Universal law….and hey, you can’t fall out of the basement right?


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    • profile image


      7 years ago

      It is a time of great uncertainty, and hopefully things will improve for people sometime soon. Interesting article.

    • Lily Luna profile imageAUTHOR

      Lorri Woodmansee 

      7 years ago from Mesa, Arizona

      Right on! BTW, I love your Avatar pic:)

    • Owl Ka Myst profile image

      Owl Ka Myst 

      7 years ago from In the Valley of Grapes

      Interesting and coincidental that I find this hub while also reading the newspaper- in the paper is a quote from HP Lovecraft.

      "The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest fear is fear of the unknown"

      We don't know where we are headed as a country, we don't know if our politicians will do something of value. Lots of unknowns in this time. However, in order to survive these times, it is best to not worry or fear the future for we do not know what that will be. Besides, worring about something that may or may not happen is a waste of time and energy.

      All we can do is work with what we have and focus on the things that bring us joy. Feeling good conquers our fears.


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