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Last night’s walking-Lola routine was similar to the other nights. When I put the harness on her, she screamed-squealed so loudly and convincingly that I thought I had hurt her. As soon as the harness was in place, though, she was quiet and happy. She had a little kick in her step as she pranced from her pen, joyfully following me. As we reached the gate from the pasture in to our backyard, though, she stopped. There is a steep incline at that spot and for some reason it scares her. She reacted the same way going back, not wanting to walk through the narrow spot with a decline.
At this place she stopped. She grunted. She let me know she was afraid. Both times I picked her up and walked her through the scary spot.
Lola’s lesson to me is when I’m afraid, I need to say it to someone who loves me and let that person carry me.
I know that fear is the opposite of faith. I know that I can choose how to think and my thinking will affect my emotions (see my How To Be Happy blog). I know these things and many times I can avoid fear. There are times, however, when fear seems unavoidable and instead of by-passing it, I have to walk through it. During those times, it’s best to be held in arms of love.
Sometimes it seems there is a “good reason” to be afraid: I remember standing outside of the ER room listening to my husband scream in pain. I felt so alone and so afraid. Sometimes there is “no good reason” to be afraid and yet I still am: I remember that stupid day when I drank six cups of coffee instead of my usual two, and had panic attacks brought on by too much caffeine consumption!
Regardless of the reason for the fear, the solution is to ask for help. I used my cell phone during the frightening hospital experience and called a sister who talked me through those moments of terror. The day of the panic attacks, I told my husband how I was feeling and he held my hand and read to me until I could relax. And both times I whispered prayers to a Friend who is always as close as my breath.
Thank you, Lola, for another lovely lesson.