fear, rodents, and i have no idea how to spell “nun-chucks”

My name is Krister and I have a completely irrational fear of mice. And squirrels. And gerbils. Basically any beady eyed rodent looking critter. And you can confiscate my Man Card when you are able to pry it from my cold, dead, hands.

Our first year or marriage Michelle and I took off to a local campground in upstate New York. All I remember is standing near the picnic table when I saw it out of the corner of my eye. (My peripheral vision is equal to that of an eagle. Or a ninja. Maybe a ninja eagle.) A field mouse was scampering around within mere inches of my flip-flop wearing foot. Within nanoseconds I attained air that would have caused Michael Jordan to hand write me a thank you card for the awesomeness of my air. I landed atop the previously mentioned picnic table with the agility of a savage panther…wild eyed I frantically scanned my surroundings to see if the evil vermin was climbing the table legs with malicious intent. It was not. Thankfully.

Then I saw the look on Michelle’s face. Her reaction to seeing my…display. That’s all I’m going to say about that.

A couple of years ago I was forced to do mortal combat with a series of mice in our house. I eventually won that battle. But. They’re back. This is a war, my friends. It will last long.

What’s this have to do with anything? Nothing really. Except that it’s gotten me thinking about irrational fears.

How many times in personal relationships have assumptions and irrational fears messed things up? How many work situations were caused or escalated based solely on irrational fears? Those things we all carry around with us for no good reason at all. Oh, we convince ourselves we have good reasons, but do we really?

Fear of failure. (Nothing ventured, nothing gained…right?)

Fear of making a mistake. In front of people. (We learn to walk by falling. Over and over and over.)

Fear of ridicule. (Mean people suck.)

Fear of vicious attacking vermin. (With nun-chucks. Pure. Evil.)

Those are just some examples. Insert your own. I’m finding that usually the initial fears vary…like my excuses for not running more. But when I follow them back, when I dig deeper and get to the point, the same fear/fears are at the root. For me, the main offender is a fear that I’ll lose control. (Rodents remain a close second.) Maybe that’s why I’m so afraid of mouse like critters. They can’t be controlled. Well, maybe freaky-deaky scientist types can somehow. And Chuck Norris probably could. Oh, and Jack Bauer. But not me.

I pretty much fear things I can’t control. Which is telling me a lot about my (lack of) faith. A mustard seed is pretty small and it seems…you get the idea.

What about you? When all the excuses and R.O.U.S.’s (Rodents Of Unusual Size) are removed from the equation…

What are you really afraid of?

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