Thursday, August 15, 2013

Three Legitimate Fears

     I alluded to fears in my first post, but didn't go into full detail. Picking only three will be pretty easy because I have three fairly general ones, and all others tend to branch off from one of these. Legitimate is such a hard word though. What seems completely understandable to me to be scared of, others might scoff at. On the other hand, my manly hubby is absolutely phobic when it comes to snakes. Me? Not so much. Rats? Spiders? Nope. So I will understand if you read this and laugh, wondering why I'm afraid of some weird stuff. I wonder sometimes myself.....

     Here they are in no particular order:

Fear #1  Heights

     Again, I really have no idea where this started, but it might have something to do with the Luke Perry scar that adorns my right eyebrow. It literally cuts right through my brow, and it's origin is a total mystery to me. It started showing up in pictures when I was around 8, so there you go. Anyway, HEIGHTS. That to me can be as small as one foot off the ground to a few stories up. I am absolutely petrified at malls where they only have a short, thin glass wall stopping people from plummeting to their deaths. This 'barrier', if you will, is there so that people can look down at lower levels. Why? What is so important to look at down there that they can't see by simply walking down to check out? Who decided this was a good idea?!? I can't walk any closer than 15 feet. You will actually find me touching the store walls as I pass. If I get any closer, I know with a certainty that someone will bump into me and I will be flung through the glass, and fall to my death. I literally can't even look in the direction of the opening. It makes me want to throw up.
     This goes for manhole covers, street grates, balconies, hotel windows, movies that show high places (Spiderman!!!) and ladders. Strangely enough, not airplanes. When you are up that high, it doesn't look real. Good thing too. I love traveling.

Fear #2  Too Much

     This one has no real 'start' that I can think of either. Just random memories of specific times where things were added to my "too much" category. I remember a time growing up when meat got put in the stove on a hot day, and for one reason or another, it was left there. A few days later while in the kitchen with my brother eating some cake, I heard some weird noises behind me. Plop. Plop. Plop. I turned around and found maggots were dropping out of the stove like a waterfall. I almost died. Cake was quickly forgotten, and my brother and I ran outside screaming our faces off. I couldn't even think of going in the house until they were gone. Maggots got added to the list.
     When I lived in Louisiana the summer after I graduated, my room got invaded with ladybugs. Oh, you think they are cute? Try having them come in the ceiling, windows, floorboards.... Nowhere was safe. Ladybugs? Added to the list.
     I hate ants. There are never only one or two of those.
     Crowds? Forget about it. I can't handle it. This went for the school cafeteria too. I got free lunches growing up, but I couldn't make myself walk into the packed, noisy lunchroom to get food. I usually ended up paying for something from the food cart outside, or not eating at all. This fear of too many people has made it's way into more areas of my life as I have gotten older. I now have a hard time at school functions, stores, and even church. I feel like I can't breathe and panic, completely clautrophobic-but with people-not walls. I freak out until I am in an empty, open place with only a few people. I really have just started avoiding these situations all together so I can avoid the panic attacks that accompany them. I used to have nightmares that had to do with people looking at me. The fear is debilitating. I still have such a hard time if I have to speak in public. My voice shakes and I really just want to cry. Or run. Unfortunately sometimes you have to do these things, no matter how uncomfortable they make you. That's why I force myself to go to school plays sometimes. (Ugh, the dread associated with gatherings!) I wish I didn't have this fear. It might have something to do with getting lost at Disneyland when I was 11 years old. It was my fault. I'm not a patient person, and I thought my brothers, and sister were taking too long on the ride that I was too scared to go on, so I wondered off to look around. I thought I would be back in time to see them getting off the ride. I wasn't. A policeman was found, a message was left at the hotel, the lost children's room was visited, and five hours later my brother Aaron came and rescued me. I remember it was scary, but I felt safe because it was Disneyland. But looking back on it, I can't recall much of a fear before this event. Hmm.....

Fear # 3  Porcelain Dolls

    This one I do know the beginning of. It will forever haunt me. It has also made people think I am crazy over the years, but whatever. Had you seen what I did, you would be terrified too! It all started when my sister, Holly and I went to our friend, Kristine's house. She was from the Philippines, and had a small 6-8 inch porcelain doll in her room that had been in her family for a few generations, I believe. The doll was on the headboard of her bed, and the thing creeped me out. Like, bad. I couldn't look at it without it giving me a bad feeling. I don't know why this one day it bothered me more than any other day, but it did. While we were playing in her room I turned it around so it wasn't watching us, and the three of us went back to playing. Soon after I looked and it was facing forward again. Confused, I went over and turned it around again and went back to playing. The next time I peeked, you guessed it, it was back facing us instead of the wall. I don't remember how many times I played this little game before I just grabbed a shirt to toss over it. I was told not to, but I did it anyway. "She won't like it," I was told. I didn't listen. This was a doll we were talking about after all. (Also, I'm not very good at listening to reason coming from others all the time.)  *Toss*  Nailed it! It was hidden by the shirt and I felt safe, even though I couldn't take my eyes off of it. I just stared and stared. I was about to look away when I noticed movement under the shirt, and it slowly started coming off. Now, I don't know how slow it was really moving, but in my 12 year old mind it was playing out like a horror movie. It seemed to take forever to fall. Then I saw WHY it fell. The freaking doll arm had to have twisted all the way around and was moving-on it's own- knocking the shirt off. I lost it. I screamed and got up to run out of the room, only to have the door not open. It would not budge. Mind you, there and no lock on this door, but I tell you with all honesty, we could not get it open. I can't remember if Holly was screaming or not, because I couldn't hear much over my terrified screams for the "stupid door to open!!!" I do remember hearing Kristina telling me to apologize to the doll because I made it mad. I yelled out amid my panic that I was sorry, and the freaking door just opened. I could have left a trail of fire after me, I ran so fast! I just wanted to be out of there. I was so scared. We all got outside onto her porch and tried to calm down. She told us a story about how the doll moves on it's own. Always has. Her grandfather had even caught it walking down the hall back in the Philippines, years and years before. I ask you, Dear Reader; why would you keep it?!? I would never pass it down! Haunted doll, you say? No thanks!! I didn't go into her house again, and she moved soon after. But the fear of that day? Burned into my brain.
     Can you believe that for Christmas that very year, my Grandma gave me a porcelain doll as a gift??? I KNOW!!! She had no idea. It would have been a huge cudos to Grandma for scaring me, because my family knows I can be hard to scare, but it was completely unintentional. She actually loved and collected them, and never knew that I hated her gift. After bringing it upstairs that morning, I cut off all of it's hair and hid it in my closet for the next few years, until I could look at it enough to throw it away.
     When I moved to Oregon and lived with my Grandparents to go to College, Grandma thought it was absurd that she had to put her precious dolls away. They were all over the house. Everywhere you turned, the creepy little things watched you. I get chills just thinking of this story because it scared me so much, and of course my boys love hearing about it. Stupid little porcelain clown dolls, and ventriloquist dummy's also fall under this category. Yuck!!
     I have had ghosts around me for as long as I can remember, but the thought of a doll moving? No. Too much. If you escaped the clown scene in Poltergeist unscathed, I envy you. I can't watch that part to this day. Brings back too much.

There you go. My three legitimate (to me) fears, in all their glory. Tell me this wouldn't scare you:

Now imagine her moving on her own. See? Nightmare for life!

1 comment:

  1. Tammy! I just read this and then did a check and I was scared the whole time I was doing it. That is a really freaky story! -Cara