I’m afraid of insects-the pincher bugs, spiders, ants, flies, wasps, moths that eat my plants and my clothes, bugs I can’t see but cause my itching, lots of itching.
I’m afraid of what erupts on my skin from the inside out, in my scalp, on my back, on my legs, in places you can’t see, big purple splotches, or itchy raised bumps, sometimes oozing. I’m afraid I don’t know when they will leave or why they came. Except this last time: it was my anger which caused the angry rash. No dispute over that.
I’m afraid of making mistakes, someone might die because of my mistake. I always wonder if Julie died because she called when I was on the phone? A typical question of a 13 year old.
I’m afraid of the cold-the chill, the shivers, the shaking.
I’m afraid of the heat, the headaches, the sunburn, the fatigue.
I’m afraid of strangers, especially men who act all confident, or women who are so friendly they want to know more.
I’m afraid of being raped.
I’m afraid to sleep: the demons that don’t let me fall sleep, the wanderings at 2 a.m., at 4 a.m., the nightmares and worries that invade the bed.
I’m afraid of being so tired I can’t keep my eyes open, I’m afraid of falling asleep driving or during a meeting, my eyes closing while listening to you.
I’m afraid of losing my friends because I’m not interesting enough or too sad or too depressed. Because I don’t hide the drama when it comes.
I’m afraid of tripping, falling, cutting my hand with a knife, burning myself reaching for a hot pan without a mitt, slipping in the shower, or falling down stairs. Taking a misstep. My life and yours, is changed with one step.
I’m afraid of getting sick, being alone in the hospital, pooping in the bed.
I’m afraid of the wind, breaking open the screen door. Again.
I’m afraid of dogs, the growling, the way they look at you, the way they jump on you at the dog park with their muddy feet and wet face.
I’m afraid of my daughter dying before I do.
I’m afraid of the house shaking under me and collapsing on me during an earthquake. Or getting out alive and not knowing what to do next.
I’m afraid of being on a roller coaster or a Ferris wheel or those scary rides at the amusement park that take you higher than you want to go and drop you faster than you want to drop.
I’m afraid of being trapped and dying in a fire.
I’m afraid of hurting you unintentionally. I’m afraid of my desire to hurt you.
I’m afraid of being locked out and having to sleep on the street or in the garage.
I’m afraid of being hungry for more than a day.
I’m afraid of my body not working anymore. I’m afraid of being in pain for a long time.
I’m afraid of losing my memory.
I’m afraid of surgery.
I’m afraid of being so afraid I might freeze instead of run when running would be the right choice.
I’m afraid of going into cold water or traveling to a country where I don’t know the language.
I’m afraid I’m not doing enough.
I’m afraid I wasn’t a good daughter.
I’m afraid of being alone as I age.
I’m afraid of this virus and what it’s doing to our world. I’m afraid of the suffering.
I’m afraid our world is collapsing as we know it and that not being a good thing.
I’m afraid I might have some illness we can’t fix.
I’m afraid I am not making the best decisions and will regret it later.
I’m afraid of losing things: phone, keys, jewelry, wallet, notes, chargers.
I’m afraid I’m getting confused.
I’m afraid of getting into a car accident.
I’m afraid of choking on a piece of challah or a fishbone or cornflakes.
I’m afraid of being a grown up.
I’m afraid of my computer and phone crashing.
I’m afraid of mean people who aren’t very nice to me.
I’m afraid of not knowing what to do.
I’m afraid of those in authority.
Sometimes I’m afraid of you.