Fears, Idle Fears

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

I have an irrational fear. I don't know where it came from. I don't recall a definitive moment when I acquired this fear, but it is there, lurking beneath the surface of my consciousness.

Of course, it comes and goes in intensity. Like a tic I have forgotten I have, until it rears its ugly head and I am ever aware of it for the next several weeks...or months.

My fear? Being stabbed by a person walking by me on the street. Nothing flashy, nothing "Psycho"-esque. Just a random stranger walking by, sliding a thin stiletto blade into my belly, as they keep walking. This person doesn't know me. Hasn't got it in for "Me" in particular, just a random serial stabber.

I know. Weird. But this fear has been there for as long as I can recall. I remember being nine and having this fear. For awhile it had a companion fear, the one I like to call "Fear of being shot to death in your bed while you sleep by an unknown assailant". For several years, I would fall asleep facing the door - so I could see death coming for me, were it to make it's move. As if I had something I could bargain with - "But wait, unknown assailant - I will grow up and make quilts and write things on the Internet, and have some mental health issues, but generally be a decent person. Isn't there some kid MORE deserving of death than I?"

Part of my city fear has been tied up in these two other fears. Being in a city, one would more likely encounter the stiletto wielding pedestrian than say - Vermont. While my chances of dying in a snow related car accident, or a potential moose mauling increased - Death by sneaky stabber was low.

I'd actually forgotten these two fears in the last two years or so. Having gone to New York and Detroit and not being stabbed, nor shot to death in my bed seemed to allay the twin fears.

"Oh Look", said Dawns irrational stabbing fear, "I can walk in a crowded street, or get on a subway and not meet my doom at the hands of some unfeeling sociopath."

"I know!", responded Dawns irrational shotgun while sleeping fear, " We've slept in these scary cities and no one has shot us in the head while we sleep!"

I feel successful. I have showed the fears that they have no power here.

"Psssst", whispers Dawns fear of dying in a fiery high altitude plane crash, "I'm still here."

I roll my eyes at it. "Fuck off", I say.

18 Baleful Regards:

Lisa said...

Yeay Dawn. You tell it. Fuck off indeed!

Mignon said...

Will you ask them to talk to my fear of randomly driving across the freeway median into the path of an oncoming semi? He just needs to get off the couch and go out and get a job, the lazy old bastard.

mamatulip said...

I still sleep facing the door so I can see what's coming for me.

Really.

Cindy said...

Irrational fear of strangers coming in my house, and driving off the side of the road, and immaculate conception

Dinosaur Mom said...

Hey, I used to sleep with my neck under the blanket to hide it from the vampires. I was sure they were coming to get me. Now I only worry about zombies, and that only under extreme duress, in my sleep.

Jackie said...

I still can't sleep with any closet doors open, because at least I would HEAR the monster coming out if they were closed.

And where I live, the fear of being randomly stabbed is not irrational. It happens all the time. It has happened at two malls I frequent, and also, my friend's sister was stabbed at the harbor one day when she was a tweenager. But I never fear it, because I give people plenty of personal space. They would have to lung for me, heh. And then I would scream so loud their ears would bleed and they'd be reduced to pudding. So really, they'd get their just desserts. (I'm so punny.)

Andrea said...

Andrea's irrational fear of having her child abducted because she turned away from the grocery cart in which he was sitting for three whole seconds wants to trade for Dawn's irrational fear of dying in a high altitude fiery airplane crash.

Seriously, I cannot run errands when Gabe is with me unless I can see him out of the corner of my eye at all times. Which made his little forray into the inner sanctum of a clothing rack at the Osh Kosh outlet store in Kansas City that much more exciting for my blood pressure when I turned around and he was literally nowhere to be seen. Scenes from that early 80s movie Adam where the kid was abducted from a Florida Wal-Mart flashed before my eyes as I tried vainly to remember in composite sketch detail every face I'd seen at the outlet mall that day.

Mitzi Green said...

hey, i had the "shot in her bed by an unknown assailant" fear as a kid, too. not so much anymore. those have all been replaced by "shot/stabbed/beaten to death by very, very well-known assailant who shares son's dna" fears...

QT said...

I sleep facing the door too. Can't shake that one....

Sugarmama said...

I had a brief stint of being afraid of earthquakes as a kid growing up in Miami, FL. (Yes, fear of earthquakes in Miami!) But I haven't really had any others since then...until I had kids. Then it was all suddenly like, fear of kid falling through window with broken screen and being impaled on sticks below, or kid playing in backyard untended and drowning in rain-filled wagon and shit. Supposedly, this stuff makes us more cautious people when we need to be...?

mothergoosemouse said...

I was all about the irrational fears, but have told them repeatedly to fuck off, and by god it has worked!

Elizabeth said...

When I'm driving, I have this completely irrational fear that I will suddenly turn right into the path of an oncoming car and get hit broadside. It's never happened, but I still flinch when driving through intersections.

Fiery plane crash? Oh, my, GOD.

Lena said...

I am the QUEEN of irrational fears. I totally get this.

Don't you ever think how silly you'll feel on your deathbed at 106 years old for spending so much time worrying?

Jess said...

Here's to overcoming irrational fears in 2007. Or at least kicking their ass.

Jenny said...

Hey! Happy New Year!

TB said...

Happy New Year! Hopefully 2007 will find you not being stabbed, shot or randomly injected with poison/disease on the street. (my own personal fear)

V said...

I always like to have a see-thru shower curtain for my irrational fear called "The guy who knows how to pick a lock at the precise moment that you enter the shower and is coming to rape/kill you"...at least I could try to beat him over the head with my jumbo size pantene then....

Catizhere said...

Oh hey, Thanks for that!
Now I not only have to fear the smarmy-looking character walking towards me is going to not only push me into the street in front of a city bus, now he'll stab me too!

 
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