Okay, it’s actually no where near that easy. Fear is unavoidable. Anyone says that they don’t feel fear is, quite frankly, full of it. Fear, as far as I’m concerned in a biological human instinct. It’s how we knew there were Sabertooth Tigers in the tall grass. It’s how we stayed away from fire the first time we got burned. It’s was keeps us looking both ways when we cross the street. Fear can be a huge asset. As with most things, I am terrible at moderation when it comes to fear. At least I used to be. I remember a point in my life in which I was actually very careful to not say the words “I am afraid.” I would mix it up with various placeholders: “I’ve got a bit of trepidation.” was honestly my favorite. It wasn’t until some one pointed out to me how much I was going out of my way to avoid stating a simple fact, that I was afraid, that I realized just how much power I was giving to all of my fears.
The way I see it now is quite easy though. My fears can usually be boiled down to two things: fear of losing something I have or of not getting something that I want. Yeah. I know. It’s quite unremarkable how simple and selfish I can be, but that is pretty much it. In the past two years my attitude and mindset have certainly approved. Sort of a byproduct of living an upright life. The God’s honest truth is: I don’t have that much uncertainty in my life to be afraid of. That’s not to say that I do the same thing over and over again, I’m simply better at rolling with the changes. I’m better at accepting that I really can’t control anything that extends past my fingertips. I’m cool with the idea that I can have opinions, but if I’m actually going to get emotional about something then I need to be in some sort of action about it. I look back sometimes and can’t believe how angry I got about things I had absolutely no control over. Most of my fears these days are related to Jack and my relationship with him. They are usually rather temporary. This is because the situation is constantly changing with the speed of a juggernaut of a 3 year old, and that I can usually come to some peace about it rather quickly. The “am I doing this right?” or “am I doing enough?” things are still rather consistent, but I’m pretty sure that’s just the curse of uncertainty that comes with being a parent.
Gone are the bigger fears that used to keep me up at night. The idea that he might just stop breathing in the middle of the night. Of that I might. Yes. I still have a good amount of fear about my own health, however I don’t let any of them stop me from living my life. These worries can be healthily factored into the “taking action” camp and moved on from. Also, there is a rather legitimate reason to be concerned when it comes to my health. I have an ailment that most people don’t have, that could cause some rather serious issues. It doesn’t scare me now, but it’s what I like to think of as “looming”. It’s just sort of there, and I’m cool with that. I’m cool with a lot of the things that used to scare the hell out of me. As stated above, most of that comes with a new attitude on acceptance. Some of it comes from just living a more life of more esteem.
And, truly, there is the experience that Gwen has granted me. I’ve said this before, but I truly do believe the worst thing that happened to you feels the exact same as the worse thing that happened to me. So, there really is no “oh, you’ve been through so much more.” or “Yeah, but it’s not the same.” I don’t think it works that way. It’s all relative to our own perception. Life can suck in America in a completely different way than it sucks in Africa. It’s just the way it is. That said, Gwen’s death made me stronger. I was able to walk through something that might crush a good amount of people, or at the very least make them bitter. I don’t know. My experience was just this: it happened. It sucks. I’m sad. My life is still great though. I couldn’t fathom what I would give in a magical scenario in which Gwen could be sleeping in the bassinet next to our bed. I’m also sort of glad I don’t have to try and think about that. However much I want her here, she is not. I have to move forward or I get stagnant. The world keeps on spinning, despite how much I’d like it to take a break.
Just in case I’ve given the impression that I can do any of this by myself, I’d like to dispel that myth now. I don’t have the strength, the will, the emotional maturity or sometimes even the desire to actually live the life that I now live. I do not do this alone. I do this with a lot of love from a lot of sources. I do this wrapped in the arms of men and women who help others for fun and for free. Also, so I can scare the hell out of the people who haven’t heard from me in a few years, I do this with the endless love of a being that I call God.
No. It’s not the God you’re thinking of. You probably haven’t heard of this God. He’s still pretty underground and raw. His music is great though and he’s got a picture of me on his fridge.