FEAR. Face Everything And Recover
FEAR. Fuck Everything And Run
That’s how Stephen King puts it in his 1998 novel “Bag of Bones”.
Face everything and recover, he said. Fuck everything and run, he said. What he didn’t say, though, if either of the options would be easy. Nor did he say how hard would taking fear be.
We all have fears, don’t we? Especially when we were younger. Irrational fears. We were afraid of the dark, because we don’t know what’s hiding in there. We were afraid of being alone because we feel like there’s always something watching us. We were afraid of blood because we feel like the tiniest drop would lead us to bleeding dry. We were afraid of spicy food because it will burn our tongue. And we were afraid of healthy food because they taste icky.
Over time, we start to identify with our fears. As irrational as they were, we seem to get attached to them. Sometimes it clouds our judgment. Like how a tiny spider scares the living shit out of some as if the spider will murder them while staring them down straight in the eye. Anyway, I was saying how some of us identify with our irrational fears while some of us outgrows the fear and we unconsciously start to get along pretty well with it.
Growing up, I am a such a ninny for scary stuff on TV and movies. Growing up in the 90’s when all the crazy shit about supernatural beings are all over the television and movies, I am quite sure that I have a really low tolerance on stuff like that. Also, my older siblings love watching those B-type horror/slasher movies with lots of unnecessary nudity and sex and blood (in retrospect, why were we even allowed to see those films is beyond me). We usually watch those during the Holy Week when TV is down, pretty cool. Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Friday the 13th, Chuckie, stuff like that. Then there are the Asian horror films. Man, those were really scary. So, I was one of those who go through a whole movie with either a throw pillow or a hand on my face, or both. Well, I used to be like that.
I don’t know when it started but I outgrew my ninny-ness for horror stuff. Well, I’m no toughie but I can’t help but feel being joked when watching horror shit on TV and movies. Well, it doesn’t help that the quality and substance on the said genre are suffering. I still love watching those stuff though, and sometimes I can feel a hand patting my back perhaps for outgrowing my fear and growing a pair along the way. Maybe I am a toughie, after all.
I also used to have a big fear of the dark and being left alone, especially when those two co-exist in a single moment. I was raised to sleep with the lights off, and I remember wishing that that wasn’t a thing. I freak out more than I usually do when I sleep with all the windows open. I have this feeling that there is something watching me, perhaps someone from the movies I talked about a couple of paragraphs ago. I usually feel uncomfortable being left home alone. It doesn’t help that I am a big worrier and a bigger paranoid sometimes.
Although I am still a bit of a worrier, I am not as freaked out as I usually am when I was younger whenever I am left alone. Actually, I like it better when I am all alone. I can do or not do whatever I want, like one time I made myself a glass of cognac and drank alone while watching TV. I felt like a thirty year old man going through a bad divorce on a Friday night. And the silence that being alone brings is just wonderful. Before I start sounding like a sad sack of shit, which I may or may not be, it’s just that being alone makes me feel like my personal space becomes bigger. I still love having conversations and all that socializing stuff, especially with the voices in my head. And with the dark, I’m dealing well with it. My imagination runs free in the dark, without being creepy or anything. And living with a shadow overhead will make you familiar with darkness. I’m just kidding, it won’t.
We outgrow fears. We deal with them and we overcome them. Perhaps we try hard sometimes and other times it just disappears. They say that fear is only in the head, or that there is nothing to fear but fear itself. Those are 100% bullshit. Apart from being cliché, those are big fat lies. We feel fear for a reason, and we shouldn’t pretend that we don’t no matter how irrational our fears may be. There is nothing to fear than fear itself, well tell that guy aiming a gun on you that shit and perhaps he won’t shoot you in the head.
Sometimes we try so hard to not associate ourselves with negativity in such a way that isn’t organic anymore. Yeah, it’s one thing to be an optimist or a pessimist but we don’t always have to deal with absolutes. Being afraid isn’t that bad. Having fears, not that bad either. It’s like dreading death. Feeling like dying is scarier than death itself. Not that I am an expert with dying or anything, haven’t tried that but I try to keep my eyes dead for added effect.
There’s no one good way of dealing with fears. Going all the way then detaching might work, but that doesn’t mean that living with the fear is a bad idea. Like I said, we don’t always deal with absolutes in life. Lots of things nowadays are non sequitur. Sometimes you have to fuck fear in the face then recover and run, or some other way around. Fear is freaky like that, I tell you.