It is hard to admit when one is afraid. It can be seen as a sign of weakness, by others, by our own self-judgement.
There are a lot of declarations out there – and a lot of “fear-mongering”, another term that seems to be gaining in popularity. While I don’t want to be ruled by fear I had the astonishing self-revelation the other day, that I was afraid of certain things.
I don’t think I am alone. There is fear of this virus, especially for those who are immune compromised, for our elders, for those who work in public places. There is fear of financial difficulties and all the ramifications. There is fear of challenging relationships where people we love, people we work with, friends and families, have opposing views. We cherish those relationships and this causes tension.
One thing I am learning is to pay attention, and even though it is vulnerable, to be honest about how I am feeling. It is how I process those feelings, whether they be fear or anger or depression . . . can be healthy or unhealthy. If this were a mental health exercise, I would say we need to talk about these things. We need to listen, to be kind, to be compassionate.
I’m thinking today especially of those going back to school. For some it is an adventure and they are not afraid. Others are sick with worry. They are in my thoughts and my prayers as I write this.
I wrote this poem as I was pondering these things:
When I Am Afraid