This week, a coworker asked/exclaimed “you’re not afraid of anything are you, Mel?” My response was “no, I fear lots of things.” and I left it at that with no further explanation.
The interaction gave me pause and I’ve been thinking of it since that moment. Being a bit of a diva, most opportunities to talk about myself are welcome, but this I cut short. Not because it was particularly uncomfortable, but because fear is such a difficult thing to address in the face of another’s vision of one’s self. And man, do I know a metric shit-ton about learning of others fears and how that has affected my views of them.
I’ve learned an awful lot about dealing with fear in the last couple of years, having faced a couple few of them. So, here they are to feed those rubbernecking monkeys on your backs:
Death from drowning in a vehicle: It’s been on my mind since I was a youngin’. It comes to mind every time I travel in a vehicle along any body of water. And it’s a bit strange, as I’m a very strong swimmer and have an affinity for all bodies of water. I can’t get near one, no matter the temperature, without wanting to jump in. Water baby. That’s me. But I fear for my life every time I’m in a car next to any kind of water. It really does seem like the worst way to go. Give me a heart attack any day, universe. kthxbye
Alienating my children: I have a pretty awesome, open relationship with my sprogs. We talk a lot. Have few secrets. Exchange frequent back/foot rubs and don’t get into too many arguments about what music to play, but it’s a real fear. I know I’m a difficult person and my sprogs are the two people in the entire universe I care most about being a better person for. They call me on my shit all the time and I adore them more for it, but I am crazy-scared of turning them off of that. They are my favourites and my bests and my experiences with my immediate fam dictate that efforts can go overboard and into friend/responsible adult territory is a niggling thing. I LOVE that they’re difficult people in their own rights and ways in turn. I LOVE that they challenge and can still be friends with so many groovy people. Losing them would be my death. Not hyperbole. You guys, my kids are awesome.
Losing my independence: I know that it’ll happen one day. I know that, one day, I’ll become dependent on others to help me survive. I pray that I’ll go before then, but that’s probably not likely given family history. I’ve always put more focus on ensuring that the loin fruits have a secure future so they can keep me in the manner to which I would like to become accustomed than on my own retirement. But I don’t want to be dependent! I want to be independent always and forever. Is that too much to ask? Really?
So, there you go. I do fear. There are more, but that’s another tale for another time. What are yours, dear rubberneckers?
So, I paid into the patriarchy and purchased the current edition of Playboy magazine last night. The current edition features a very snappy cover (I’m a sucker for a great cover), pre-US-election journalism and a mémoir of Hef’s girlfriends over the last 50 years. How does a girl resist?
The first thing I paid any kind of attention to was an article about the pros and cons of dating single mothers. I’ll have more to say about that at another time, I’m sure. Directly after meeting that article, I had a gaggle of 6 year old trick or treaters come to my back porch, where I was quietly enjoying the magazine, a cigarette and a glass of whisky, who interrupted my reading. Damned kids.
I haven’t picked it up since.
Tonight, the daughter discovered it. It all went a little like this:
Daughter: You did buy that Playboy!
Me: Yup, but I haven’t really read it yet.
Daughter: I’m reading it.
Me: But I haven’t read it yet!
Me: Fine, but no adopting crazy expectations about nudity, beauty and sexuality, k?
Daughter: Duh. Thanks, Tips.
Daughter: Did you know that pixelation of models has increased 2700%? That’s just censorship. Censorship is overrated.
Daughter: Hugh Hefner had a lot of girlfriends.
And this is why I let the sprogs read (almost) whatever the fuck they want.