Chicago mom: I’m too paralyzed by fear to really live my life

I love me some Dolly Parton.

I mean, how can you not?

I liken people who don’t like her to the same ones who kick kittens and steal suckers from toddlers.

So, when she posted a status update on Facebook – yes, I follow her, and YOU SHOULD TOO – it got me to thinking.

“I just love people who are bold enough to get out there and do what they do and do it without fear!”

I am not one of those bold people.

I never have been.

Since I was a little girl, I have always been fearful.

In third grade, I was so afraid of my teacher, I would vomit almost every morning before school.

In my defense, she was one of Satan’s minions.

When I was a freshman, I became a “band manager” instead of marching in the award winning band.

Why?

I was afraid to go to band camp and be tortured by the upperclassmen.

College?

I didn’t go right after high school.

Why?

I was afraid of sharing a room with someone I didn’t know.

As an adult, I got into the competitive nursing school I was working toward for three years . . . then turned it down.

Why?

I was afraid of the rigorous schedule.

Now I know some of the above are “normal” fears, but “normal” people push through them.

Me? I let them hold me back.

Why?

Why can’t I just be less immobilized by fear?

Why can’t I just push forward and work through it?

I love to write, but I don’t value myself or my writing.

One of my dear friends told me this the other day.

It’s true.

I don’t.

I make sure to correct anyone who calls me a writer.

No, I am a blogger, I say.

I don’t write in complete sentences and my grammar isn’t good enough, therefore, I am not a writer.

Because this apparently is the scale for being a writer in my fear-riddled brain.

When I was back in my hometown last weekend, I ran into an old teacher whom I hadn’t seen in 30 years.

She asked what I did for a living.

I blurted out STAY-AT-HOME MOM.

And while I am a stay-at-home mom and love that I am able to be, why wasn’t my first reaction to say, ” I am a writer, Mrs. Roberts. That is what I do.”

Fear.

Afraid that if I say I am a writer, I will have to actually live up to that?

That I will have to value myself a little more?

 Someday I hope to be one of those "bold" people. But first I have to get out of the fetal position.
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