The things I fear

We all have things that can keep up awake at night, or things that startle us from slumber, or things that make out stomachs plummet out of our bodies. Fear is a very strong emotion, and it probably the most effective teacher. The thing is, we have evolved far beyond the simple lives of our ancestors and our fears have become more complex and confusing to match our lives. Most people get nervous when ricking bodily harm, such as standing on the edge of a tall building, or risking social harm, such as public speaking... but what about your other fears? What of the rational, irrational and WTF fears that plague your dreams, that make you feel sick and scared, that make others look at you strangely?

The Rational

Listening to someone choke to death over VoIP My friends and I spend a lot of time chatting over Skype while playing video games. My friends are also, apparently, really bad multitasking. You'd think it would be easy enough to eat and not inhale at the same time, but I guess Mother Nature was feeling a little sloppy when she designed the esophagus (or it's a skill my lovely friends have yet to master) Every time I hear one of the bastards coughing, my heart stops. Imagine hearing someone struggle for air and not being anywhere nearby to help them... imagine having to listen to your best friend die in an absolutely pointless way, and not being able to do anything about it. *shudder*

Returning home to find the apartment ransacked/rabbits dead Even during short vacations that are only two or three days, I get bouts of worry over the apartment being broken into, or the rabbits getting sick. Opening the door after returning is always a very tense moment until I can see that everything is perfectly okay.

Forgetting how to breathe I stuck this under rational because I do occasionally suffer from sleep apnea. There are few things more alarming than waking up to find yourself not breathing and then momentarily forgetting how to draw a breath. I fear the day that I don't remember in time.

My heart stopping Related to the above, I also fear my heart stopping. Again, this is for a reason: my whole family gets heart palpitations (my grandfather has a pacemaker). Sometimes my heart will double-beat and then miss the next beat. If I don't stop it, it can go on like that indefinitely. Providing I'm not frozen in fear, I can clear my throat and cough a little and it resumes a normal rhythm... though sometimes it takes a moment for me to remember how to make it stop. Your heart "skipping a beat" is not romantic in any way.

The Irrational

Tsunamis For as long as I can remember, during periods of stress in my life, my dreams are full of tsunamis. I'll dream that I'm at a beach, and in the distance I see a giant wave bearing down on me. The dream then turns into a race up cliff faces, staircases and sand dunes to get to safety before the wave reaches the shore. Of course, I've never seen a tsunami, and living deep inland in Canada means I'll probably never be in any danger from them... and I suspect that's precisely why they feature so heavily in my dreams.

Making phone calls to strangers T and I get into arguments about who should call for a taxi/pizza/information, because we both occasionally panic when needing to make a phone call. If I have to call someone to make an appointment or get some information, sometimes I have to take a day or two to prepare for the task.

Stairs/elevators/escalators I, apparently, have a lot of anxiety surrounding multi-story buildings. In my dreams I have infinite problems with staircases and elevators - the stairs are steep near to the point of being vertical, the steps are so narrow that you can only fit half your foot on each. They routinely have whole sections missing, requiring me to scale a wall with only a handrail for support. The elevators regularly plummet, spin, and turn me upside-down. In real life I get a sick, stomach-plummeting feeling every time I step onto an elevator, and a shiver of relief every time I step off. I'll occasionally freeze at the top of a staircase before descending, feeling like I'm going to trip and fall. Knowing I'm going to trip and fall.

The WTF?

Invisible cars I don't trust people who drive cars. I hate crossing roads. I refuse to cross at a crosswalk if the signal is anything but "WALK" - I will not sprint across while it's flashing. (This annoys my friends to no end, I imagine) Even when I'm crossing "safely," after looking both ways, I experience momentary terror at the thought of an invisible, silent car barrelling towards me. Fuck you, Bond.

I have no friends I can't express this fear out loud too often, because it's extremely insulting... but sometimes I get stricken with the fear that all my friends (and T) are putting on a show or act for some other gain, and that everyone secretly hates me.

Waking up to find it was all a dream I don't think I have to elaborate on this one too much. What if the past five years were only a dream? What if I wake up to find myself back in high school again? That would be absolutely terrible. High school is the worst.

I am the centre of the universe and I don't know it. I sometimes get an eerie feeling when I catch strangers staring at me. Say I'm in a car, idly looking at the passing scenery, and someone half a block away on the sidewalk stares directly at me until we pass by. Who the hell stares at people in passing cars? Why would they stare at me? Is there something about myself I don't know? What if the universe is a creation of my imagination, and everyone who inhabits it knows this, but they can't let me know because if I realize it the whole world will fall apart at the edges?

Airstrikes If I hear an unexpected siren, a low-flying airplane or a distant boom, I get gripped with the fear that we are being attacked by enemy planes dropping atomic bombs on my tiny city. I don't know why sirens set off this fear, because my little Canadian city certainly has no airstrike warning system in place, but there it is.

Sound a little paranoid?

5 things about

The things I fear
  1. I haven't worried too much about someone else choking while I'm on Skype with them; I have been depressed sometimes that I can't reach out and choke my mother over Skype though.

    I asked my friends to confirm that they're merely putting on a show of being my friends; they let me know that they do secretly hate me, so now I don't worry about it any more.

    I once thought I was the center of the universe. The Total Perspective Vortex fixed that.

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  2. Ohnoes! I forgot that you had commented here. So sorry!

    Something about cake. Fairy cake. (Which is apparently what the Brits call a cupcake. As if I needed more reason to think they were off their rockers.)

    To be honest, that was around the time the whole series went a bit odd.

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  3. Haha! It's ok. I would have mentioned that to my friends but they would just say that you hate me too. ;-)

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  4. Lulz, course I don't hate you.

    You're one of my favourite Internet people of dubious real life existence. :3

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  5. I would doubt my existence, then I thought about it....never mind; that's a worn-out quip.

    I think it would be creepy of me to offer proof, so I'll just shut up now...

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