Check me out this week on the Secret Society of List Addicts, where I talk about Things We'd All Love to Do but are Generally Frowned Upon.
When I was little, I believed that an evil kangaroo lived in my closet and wanted nothing more than to thump me to death with his big long feet.
Did I mention that I was a weird, weird child?
Every time I'd have to lie down for a nap, or go to sleep at night, I was convinced that kangaroo was ready to burst out of the closet and pummel me while I tried to huddle under the covers, helpless.
I also believed that the Farmer in the Dell resided in my bathroom behind the door. He had his pitchfork ready, waiting for the right moment to run me through. (Seriously, think about that evil Farmer with his Hi-Ho's and his forcibly taking of a wife...who clearly is also evil and then kidnaps a child. And let's not even get started on that poor, lonely cheese.)
A leopard also lived in the bathroom, though not necessarily at the same time as the Farmer in the Dell (maybe they had a timeshare thing? Maybe it had something to do with the Lonely, Stand-Alone Cheese?). The leopard patrolled the floors. I remember one night around 3 am when I had to GO, but couldn't get to the toilet the conventional way. I managed to leap from the hall onto the counter, then crawled from the counter over to the toilet, making sure to keep my feet off the floor.
And let's not even talk about the first time someone in my family told me about the Boogie Man.
I still get scared these days, but it's usually of things that are far more "normal": fear of failure, fear of making a fool of myself, fear of not making good (or Right) decisions. But really, are these things I fear any less ridiculous than a murderous kangaroo or wife-abducting farmer? Is it any more silly to fear something that hasn't even happened yet in the same way I quaked at the thought of a bathroom floor-protecting leopard?
Life is fun(nier)--I was a weird-ass kid, but it definitely gives me good fodder for the odd chuckle and head shake now. Geez, a psycho kangaroo? Bathroom leopard? Popular childrens song turned homicidal maniac? That's good shit.
Get honest--My fears are still ridiculous, and are a great excuse to just be lazy...to zombify myself in front of the TV, or--let's be brutally truthful here--zonk out for hours with my beloved Kindle. Fears are a good way to talk oneself out of anything. The perfect time-waster. The best alibi.
Doing the Right Thing--As my dad would say when any of his children or high-school soccer team boys would be bleeding profusely from the head, face or body, "SUCK IT UP." Yes, I'll fail. Yes, I'll probably look like an idiot a time or two more before I croak. And yes, I'll still make some bad decisions (hello, jeggings). But suck it up. Get to it. Get what you want. Find a way. Make it happen.