Prose: Fear

Fear is a powerful thing.

In the words of the great Franklin Roosevelt, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Fear has the ability to shock my body and my mind, kickstart every fibre of my being into fight or flight mode as I watch those walls I had so painstakingly erected to protect myself crumble into dust, Fear creeping into its foundations. Fear is a friend I have come to know well, for you see, I have always been afraid.

When I first fell in love with the boy who told me I wasn’t good enough, that my waistline wasn’t defined enough and that my disposition did not equate to what he believed was his definition of “perfection”, I was afraid. I feared that I would lose the only person who apparently loved and cherished me while he etched onto my bones the reflections of his own insecurities that he was too afraid to face head on. He injected a poison that blackened my veins and stuck thorns in my sides that I did not have the strength to remove till Fear gave me Courage to leave before I could wither away.

Then, I fell in love with a romantic who feared that he could never again replicate that great love he once had with a girl who abandoned him for another. I stayed longer than I should have and cradled his delicate heart against my bosom in the hopes that he would eventually change his mind even while he unknowingly chipped away at what remained of my heart. Unfortunately, his Fear lingered within his chest while mine whispered into my ear, “He will never love you the way you want him to.” And so, I left once more.

You think that Fear would have told me how dangerous falling in love is given my track record with the boys who are now relics of my past. Yet today, I find myself tumbling head over heels for a man with more caliber, compassion and kindness than anyone I’ve known. He mends my heart, keeps me close to his chest and lingers on my lips a little longer than he needs to; he heals me in ways I cannot fully explain as my Fear is soothed to sleep by what could be the beginnings of something golden.

Fear is a powerful thing. But for now, my actions are no longer perpetuated by what Fear has to say. I am no longer afraid of Fear.

Despite the possibility that it could rear its ugly head again at any moment, I will revel in this temporary bliss. I will savor these moments where my chest no longer feels hollow and empty. Though it may be temporary, I have finally found reprieve and I pray that I never have to leave.

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