Dealing with Fears
I hate bridges. Let me clarify that. I hate driving over bridges. I don’t like being a passenger in a car going over a bridge, but that’s much easier for me to deal with than being the driver. For the first few years of my driving life, I dealt with this fear by avoiding any driving that had me going over a bridge. However, with living on Long Island, that proved to be a challenge. After a few years of realizing this was no way to live, I forced myself to drive over small bridges. Finally, I started driving over larger ones. Despite my success, bridges still make me uncomfortable.
My husband had the flu last week and we were supposed to baby sit for my grandson Luke. This means a trip off Long Island driving across a bridge. Clearly, I wasn’t going to miss the opportunity to see Luke, so over the Throgs Neck Bridge I drive.
As I’m driving I’m remembering how many years ago, this might have put me into a panic attack. I still don’t like it, and I notice my hands clench the steering wheel. I start to sweat and I sing out loud as I drive (I always sing “Let there be Peace on Earth” I don’t know why, but that’s what I sing.) However, I continue to drive over that damn bridge.
So it seems to me I will always have issues with bridges, but I’m not going to let it stop me from doing what I want. I’m learning to be comfortable with being uncomfortable, and it’s something I need to re-learn Every. Single. Day. I had fears about starting Alegna Soap®, fears about speaking in public and I felt the fear and did it anyway. My only regret is that it took me so long to figure out that facing a fear is not a one time thing, it’s a process I need to repeat constantly. My reward for facing my fear of bridges was having Luke all to myself Friday night.
How do you deal with your fears? Do you have any coping mechanisms you can share in the comments?
Yours in Gratitude,