“Fear is only as deep as the mind allows.”
Over the years, I have discovered, grown, changed and conquered things that eventually made me whom I am today. Not an easy feat. I spent so much of my first half of my life scared of so many things. Even my own shadow. The dark… still a fear, a big one. Animals, they creep me out, especially rodents. I have a lot of fears, still.
Yet over the years, there are some things on my “bucket list” that I really want to conquer. For most people, these things would be simple, almost laughable. Yet for me, I have a major fear factor. Sports, team sports, causes me absolute fear. As a child in school/high school, I was always the last kid chosen. Always. I feel this absolute stress, at the thought of catching a ball, hitting a ball, throwing a ball… I hated the feeling that always accompanied this… that unwanted and burdensome feeling of being a loser. Now, as I have grown up, I have heard countless people say that’s how they felt. Yet still, it is a feeling that over takes me when in that kind of senario.
On my bucket list are things listed to battled some of those fears… to play on a baseball team… I didn’t care if I still sucked at it, I just wanted to overcome the fear of being on a team. I did this a few years ago. There are the ladies teams… church teams in town and my friends convinced me that it was “safe” to join. Little did they know I suck. Little did I know that not much changes from high school to adulthood. There are always the overly intense people that take sports way to serious. lol Yet, here’s the thing, I did it. I was on a team, I went up to bat and actually made contact with the ball a few times. I still got out way too often… and all that stuff but… I did it. I didn’t have a heart attack. And you know what? Despite that fact that the mental picture of me all of a sudden becoming a great hitter and catcher didn’t become a reality… I felt pretty good.
Part of the reason I have some fears was the ridicule of those in my life. Even by my own friends … often in jest… I suppose that my self esteem was so little that I often believed the words of those around me.
Dancing was another thing that I am painfully embarassesed to do in front of anyone. I can’t move. I have no rhythm. I am so self conscious. I am so jealous of the fact that my boys can shake what their mama gave them and not be shy about it. They are pretty good movers and shakers too. Add my Adventist upbring… I had no hope.
Sanj and I always talked about taking ballroom dancing. Yet, my plan was to take it first alone… figure it out, at least a little bit and then do it as a couple… this way I figured I’d have a chance to at least keep up with Sanj… who is a natural.
Nope. This is not the way it happened. 2 other couple friends signed up for it and invited us. How fun! Then the stress factor came in. Sanj is an intense learner. I was so stressed about him feeling frustrated having me as his partner. (That whole high school thing again)… My heart was hurting all day thinking of the stress. I even devoted a lot of time praying… despite the fact that God likely had bigger things, like straving children, on His plate. I hate making a fool of myself, at least on purpose.
First of all, our teacher is great. She is this young thing that just makes me feel like I can do it. The first dance we learned was the Box Step or the Waltz and some variations of it. I felt like I was the Reema of my freshman year in university looking at Sanj with those doe eyes… praying he would notice me… except this time I was praying that I didn’t let him down.
Ok… all in all… I was very proud of myself. I DIDN’T have a heart attack! I had to watch his feet the whole time or I’d lose my footing ang after starting at Sanj’s feet so long, it looked like his shoes were both left feet!!!
I also finally learned to let him lead!!! I can be a follower! And in the end, it actually had fun (sweated off few pounds just from the stress) and felt like I knew a dance.
Then… the teacher said, “Now let’s learn the Cha Cha.”
That was another whole story.
Here’s the thing… I can over come fears. It’s just usually in my head. I mean, why do I care what others think? There will always be others better than me. Always! And while I still can’t “Dance like no one’s watching,…” at least I am dancing!
“Dance like no one’s watching. Love like you’ve never been hurt. Sing like no one’s listening and live like it’s heaven on earth.”