I almost fell out of my chair this morning when I saw Bindu’s writing prompt and Day 4 thoughts were regarding fear. I swear this project is eerie. Over and over again I see my thoughts “read” and answered by the collective voices. I see again why collective energy is something to hold sacred. There is power in it.
And I am afraid.
Not of the power. I am afraid for a bunch of other reasons. Posts on fear and understanding that I am not the only one who is afraid of something was exactly what I needed today. And here it will be, today, unfolding, as each participant gets in their 800 words.
(By the way, I’m starting that early today. Yesterday was 14 hour writing day for work and I never did get my 800 personal words down.)
So what am I afraid of?
My ex-husband is moving back in with his mother. He has no job. In his pursuit to continually thwart my ongoing efforts to collect child support, he will again evade me on a colossal level. As my trajectory continues to rise, his continues to fall, in direct and consistent rebuttal of the way he said it would be if I ever left him. His failure to come through and man-up comes as no surprise. Rather, it reminds me deeply of every time I depended on him and he left me hanging, left me vulnerable. It was so constant that I couldn’t let myself sleep if he was awake…I couldn’t trust him not to do something awful. I don’t depend on him anymore, or so I thought. I realize now that I’ve been secretly hoping this last wave of legal effort would pay off. That 3 years after the divorce, I could safely attach some level of good will to him. I hate that his repeated failures can still affect my feelings of security.
I am afraid because this morning my jeans wouldn’t button. This, I know, is ridiculous. But if anyone has read the posts that pre-date this one, you’ll know I’ve dreaded this. It forces the perceived “problem” into the tangible realm. I must deal with it head on now and I’m afraid I can’t do that sans extremes. The wrinkled-faced Kanye-woman is laughing.
I’m afraid because I have another 12 hours of work ahead of me and am not guaranteed child care for more than 6. I am afraid of what happens if I don’t finish my work in time to make my paycheck as full as it can be. I am afraid of a two hour drive with little children who have missed Mommy and need attention I have no energy today to give.
I am afraid I’ll never get to the place where there is more margin in life. Today has more than this day a year ago had in good measure. But in order to relax and know we’ll Be Okay, I need a little more margin. A little more room to flex and fail.
And speaking of failing, I’m afraid I’ll be like Him. That my kids will have two failures for parents. He is making his position very clear: he’s a deadbeat. What if it turns out I’m completely inadequate? What if my bread winning is only crumbs and stale toast? What if something happens to me? What if I lose my grip and have to take a step back?
The pressure is frightening. It’s looming.
There’s another voice. It’s a whisper, melodic. It tells me to breathe. Open my airway. Let the day unfold. Just take one step forward and don’t look further than the next task. This voice has a ripple sound of water with it because I always imagine it pointing to leaves floating down the stream. The leaves are my fears. They are acknowledged. But I am watching them float in the current away from me.
I will not gather those leaves and hug them to my chest. I will not live in the realm of decomposing tree fodder. I will stretch my roots deeper into the dirt and I will raise my arms to the sky. I will welcome sun and rain because both mean Life. The new growth pushed those leaves to the ground and my breath blew them into the water.
Blow away David. Blow away discouragement. Blow away inadequacy. Blow away weakness. Blow….blow….blow.