Since childhood I’ve been afraid at night-time. As I write this in the cold light of day, I know it’s irrational but at the time – the fear is real. For many years there was no way I would stay in the house on my own at night. I’d have to go stay with someone else or have someone come and stay with me.
It became a bit impractical. I suppose it could have been arranged with some effort, but it just got… well… basically… it was just silly. So a couple of years ago, for the first time I stayed in the apartment on my own. The ritual was exhausting! I checked all doors and windows numerous times. I debated for ages who’d get the bigger fright, the burglar or me, if left the bathroom door open while I had a shower. I had to have TV or music on at all times and I had lots of light on. There’s nothing I hate more than walking into a dark room if I’m alone.
On Monday night himself was away and so I braced myself for the long walk up and down the apartment. When I got home I checked every room, to make sure that no burglar had let himself in and was browsing the books on the shelf or sitting in the spare room flicking through a magazine, awaiting my return. I made myself a drink and sat down in front of the telly. Then I realised I’d left my phone in the car. So I went out to the car to get it and when I came back in… yes you guessed it. I did another lap of the house just to make sure the burglar wasn’t having a shower himself. (Yes, I always check the bathroom too.)
You may well be wondering what medication I am (or should be) on. And don’t think that I don’t know it’s mad. I KNOW IT’S MAD! Sitting here it is ridiculous to think that in a few hours, all rationale will desert me if I am alone and I’ll be doing laps of the house, checking doors I’ve already checked.
As a Christian who believes the scripture that says, ‘perfect love casts out all fear’, I know it’s not what God wants for me. I’m well aware that it is my love that is imperfect.
My double checking of all rooms confirmed that I am still as bad as I ever was. But what I decided to do on Monday night was give myself a break. It is what it is. I think I’m just getting used to it. I got into bed with a long film going on the laptop so I’d be asleep before it ended. I left the lamp on and eventually… fell asleep.
When I woke up, I did another lap of the house, to see if the well-read, freshly showered burglar had slept ok and wanted some breakfast. But there was no one there.
HUH! Typical ne’er-do-well. I can’t believe he left without saying goodbye! 😉
2 thoughts on “Conquering fear? or just getting used to it?”
I know exactly how you feel. I think you are very brave to have endured a night on your own,it is something I have yet to do. I don’t even like staying downstairs on my own when everyone is in bed. My mam is 88 and lives alone. I don’t know how she does it. I’d be terrified. Well done you!!! 🙂
Thanks Trish. Glad i’m not alone in it! 🙂 x