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Lost In The Fog


Ever had a mundane experience or moment that led to a significant self discovery?  This happened to me on the way back from my husband’s doctor’s appointment.  Portland awoke to a thick veil of fog this morning.  I’ve never liked fog.  I don’t like it because it makes feel claustrophobic.  Fog gives me the sense of being hemmed in on all sides, and that makes me edgy.

This morning as we were headed over the bridge onto the freeway, because we were near the river, the fog was particularly heavy.  As I looked into the traffic ahead of us, I began to experience a slightly panicky sensation and remarked to my husband, “I don’t like not knowing what lies ahead.”   To this my husband commented that as long as he could see the red tail lights 150 feet in front of us,  there was nothing to worry about.  Yet to me, the cars in the distance seemed so far away that it “felt” like we were heading into a void.  You could not see the structure of the bridge around us nor over us, and the road seemed to disappear into a wall of gray, with no sign of the river or city below.  It was then that I said to my husband, “I just had an epiphany!  Being afraid of going over this bridge in the fog is the story of my life!  Instead of focusing on what I can see ahead of me, I tend to focus on all the ‘negative space’ that makes me afraid of what I can’t see.” ….. (to read entire article, click the MORE button)

From early childhood I recall always being afraid of things.  Especially new things.  I was never one for wanting to experience adventures.  No, not me.  I preferred the safe and familiar to the bold and experimental.  Above all,  I needed to be certain that I would not get hurt and that there was no danger.

While other kids took skiing lessons, dove off the high dive at the neighborhood pool, and pursued other physical thrills, I liked being indoors where I could control my environment.  My adventures came in the form of imagination, where, through books, music and movies, I could safely experience the “scary” world from within the comfort of my own four walls.

I have no idea why I am like this. I’ve fought to overcome these irrational fears all my life, but without much success.  It makes me wonder, what, if anything, might have happened in my early life to precipitate this personality flaw?  I suppose I will never know the answer to that question…and in reality, I’m not certain it would change anything if I were to uncover some childhood trauma that flipped on my overactive fear switch.  I can’t go back and relive my childhood.  My goal now is to incorporate this lesson into my life by way of some concrete action.  The meaning is obvious:  Focus on what you can see instead of being afraid of what you cannot.

As a believer in a loving God and savior, I know in my spirit that although at times I may feel ‘lost in the fog’, if I will only keep my eyes on the light just ahead of me, and not on the ‘negative’ or ’empty’ space around me, The Lord will will get me where I need to be!

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  1. CommentsJoni   |  Wednesday, 26 January 2011 at 7:09 pm

    That describes me as a child, but I know what my trauma was…abandonment by my mother at the age of 5. This was very insightful…I too will try to focus on the light ahead rather than the negative surrounding it.

  2. CommentsAmylisa   |  Wednesday, 26 January 2011 at 7:53 pm

    I am so glad I read this! I can definitely relate to what you said. Thanks Bonnie Anne. Love you.

  3. CommentsAlison   |  Wednesday, 26 January 2011 at 10:31 pm

    Those are truly inspired words, Swannie, and I can identify with your experience in the fog, as I’ve had several of my own similar to this… epiphanies which I like to think of as “tender mercies from the Lord”. I still forget at times and slip back into the fear and dread of what might happen in the future, but it’s always when I remember to “look to the light” that I’m brought out of my dark place, and reminded of Who is actually in charge and in control of things. There is no greater comfort to me than knowing this…thank you for sharing!

  4. CommentsDenise (Leppardlady)   |  Thursday, 27 January 2011 at 1:29 am

    I never went skiing in high school because I was always afraid of breaking something and having people laugh at me; I never learned how to swim because I hate having the water close in around me … it wasn’t until reading your post, Swannie, that I realized I also concentrate on the negative around me and I haven’t been experiencing life. Thank you. *hugs*

  5. CommentsAshley @ Hello Kitty Bags   |  Saturday, 29 January 2011 at 3:57 pm

    Very inspiring words thanks for sharing.. I agree
    God is in control.. great post!

  6. Commentsfrannie   |  Tuesday, 08 February 2011 at 12:17 am

    Very inspiring piece Swannie as you can see. It seems others have had somewhat the same thoughts and fears including myself. My biggest fear is that I will never get rid of the negativity that surrounds me daily. I would love to be a positive person. I think it’s because I’ve had to face so many disappointments as of late! But I so like your epiphany and I so want to have the same! *warm hugs my friend*

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