Throughout your life FEAR will always find a way to make a guest appearance. FEAR will never show up without a story…a story from your past that replays in your present and future mind that has convinced you that you will not succeed if you tried again or even tried at all. The details in the story are so believable and difficult to imagine past the pain. You have carried that pain because you have convinced yourself that you can’t do it. But I’m here to report to you that as I continue to work on every area of my life that is still dealing with FEAR, there is one area of my life that I conquered FEAR after several years of replaying the story….
I call this blog “Fear 2.0”
I was in middle school at a pool party and while standing at the edge of the pool one of the boys at the party was playing around with some of the people there and as he was running around, he came by me and with both hands, pushed me from behind into the 8 feet part of the pool. All I can remember is me fighting the water terrified because I could not swim. While in the water bobbing up and down, I managed to fight my way to the side of the pool and I pulled myself up as much as I could then I felt the help of 2 adults. In my mind I was drowning but I don’t know if that was known at the time until I was able to catch my breath and then I said to the 2 adults that helped me that I was drowning in the pool and I then pointed to the boy who threw me in. I asked to be picked up early from the party due to being embarrassed and humiliated and the little boy got in trouble. This is the incident that birthed the FEAR of swimming.
Fast-forward to 2005: I am now a young adult in my 20’s and I took a trip to Hawaii for my birthday with a girlfriend. I told her I could not swim but I would try snorkeling since you didn’t have to go out into the deep parts of the water. My thought was I could just stick my face in the water with my facemask and head out maybe 2 or 3 hundred yards from the shoreline. It was an epic fail. The girlfriend that was with me didn’t know how to speak to my fear and help me develop the confidence and knowledge I needed in order to snorkel. It doesn’t make her a bad person at all but it was a reminder to me that conquering fear not only is an inside job but it also includes having the right people in your life who can speak directly to that fear.
Fast-forward to 2014: I reached a point of no return with fear and finally got up the nerve to tell a friend that I needed to learn how to swim so one Saturday in the summer time we went to an indoor pool at a recreation center and he spoke to my fear. He convinced me to put my trust in him and not fear by stating his credentials and experience. The longer he talked and showed me in the water that I was in good hands, the more trust I developed in him. After a few hours of applying the technique that he taught me, he slowly let my hand go but stayed in arms reach as I successfully, for the first time, swam a lap across the 8 foot depth of water to the opposite end of the pool. I kept swimming until fear was completely eliminated from my mind.
Fast Forward to 2019 – January 7th – 11th I took a vacation with a girlfriend to St. Lucia and at the time did not know she was not only an amazing swimmer but her favorite thing to do on vacation was to snorkel.
Even though I was now confident in my swimming ability, I still had a fear about snorkeling that never left me from that Epic Fail in Hawaii that still played in my mind. I told her my fear with snorkeling and she convinced me to put my trust in her and not fear by stating her credentials and experience. The longer she talked and showed me in the water that I was in good hands, the more trust I developed in her
She never stops talking to me in the process, which gave fear no opportunity to replay my mental story
Slowly but surely I’m snorkeling…the epic fail from 2005 convinced me that the rambling of the sound of water which reminded me of the fight I had in the pool as a young girl in middle school robbed me of a beautiful experience. Now as an adult I am blown away at the quietness of the water and the visible beauty of the fish and the coral of the ocean. I jumped out of the water and said out loud in amazement how quiet it is underwater and how proud I am that I can enjoy this experience without fear. This snorkeling experience allowed me to see some beautiful sergeant major fish as my girlfriend threw bread at me so that she could snap the perfect picture.
While conquering one fear, another fear made an encore appearance but in a different form. You see, fear is very sneaky and will show up when you least expect it. What I learned about the difference between Fear and Truth is that fear is False Evidence Appearing Real and believing Truth in a matter means conformity to fact or reality. In both situations the 2 individuals that were with me when fear tried to replay the story of failure in my mind, they both presented credentials and evidence in order for me to conquer fear. That’s the power of TRUTH. It will always have real evidence to confirm it’s validity but Fear will make false claims that will always look and feel like its real.
It’s not necessary to always have someone there in order to conquer fear because you have the power to change that fear in you on your own but in my case, God positioned the right people around me who helped me to develop the confidence and skills in order to combat fear. Question? If you took inventory of the people around you do they have the ability to help you fight fear? As you continue to live, you will begin to understand the importance of connections and attachments. While connections will feed you (ex: enhance your well being), attachments will drain you (ex: take more than it gives and rarely if ever reciprocate what’s being given). Fear has to be conquered from the inside out so monitor the voices in you and around you.
Xoxo Charlene Evans
Facebook: Chiccy Baritone ~ Poet
Definition of Treading water:
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Water treading is an aspect of swimming that involves a swimmer staying in a vertical position in the water while keeping his or her head above the surface of the water. Treading water provides the swimmer an opportunity to keep the head from becoming submerged while not providing sufficient directional thrust to overcome inertia and propel the swimmer in any specific direction.
I started off with the definition of “Treading” water for a reason. I didn’t know how to at first and was a little scared of the possibility of not being able to come back up if I found myself going under water. I practiced this exercise with my boyfriend who is an experienced swimmer and while listening to him give me instructions on what to do, I was holding on to the edge of the pool. When it was time to tread water, I only did it close to the edge because if I found myself going under and not able to pull myself up, I could always reach for the edge to help me.
He took notice and said, ”Charlene, you need to get away from the edge and tread because if there is no edge around, you need to have faith in knowing you have the technique down in order to keep yourself up.” So I inched away from the edge and said out loud,”Charlene you can do this! Don’t be afraid.” My boyfriend, watching and listening as I spoke out loud my faith said,” I got you…I won’t let anything happen to you.”
Here goes nothing….I moved towards the center of the pool….breathe in slowly to relax myself and most importantly “think” about what I needed to do…
So…I was treading and as my boyfriend watched intensely, I felt my faith build and build! Wow! I am treading water!!!!!!! WHOOHOO!!
This was a HUGE accomplishment for me because I am not “best friends” with swimming let along treading water but I felt great and excited. Then, God spoke to my spirit:
“You are holding on to what’s familiar. I have called you OUT but you only come out far enough so that you can be able to go back to the edge if you need to; afraid to drown in a land that is unknown to you. But, I told you before; I will never leave you nor forsake you. I will not let you drown in this next season of your life.”
I immediate begin to tear up with joy because I trust the voice of God and His instructions. This process that God is not only taking me through but taking you through (yes the one reading this!) will feel like you are about to drown or go under because you have not experienced this place in your life before. You don’t have a voice in your life that has done it quite the way that God is giving it to you to do so you don’t feel like you will live through it but you will…
Just “Keep Treading”
Don’t stop moving…I know you feel tired…you don’t feel like you have support…everyone you have shared your vision with has made you feel like it is not possible but it is! God has a PLAN for your life! Jeremiah 29:11 says,”For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
Your instructor (God) is holding you up Just “Keep Treading”……YES!
XOXO God Bless!
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Facebook: Chiccy Baritone ~ Poet