Last week I had three things happen, that completely rocked me. The fear that stayed bottled inside my soul, erupted yesterday and it wasn’t until I talked it out in detail with my husband that I realised what was really going on.
Last Monday on the way home from our Family Dinner, I had my Dad in my car with me (thankfully) and we were all chatting away, in the dark with rain pouring, I entered a round- a- bout, when a young guy on a scooter was coming out of it the wrong way, without a helmet on straight into my path. I slammed the brakes and just missed him but the darkness and the rain, meant that it was such a close call nearly hitting this young person.
The questions of what if? what could have been? flooded into my heart and mind.
Then on Friday morning bookending my week, as I was driving once again in the rain, someone turned straight into my lane, across it. I slammed on my brakes and my car skidded, writhing back and forward, nearly doughnut-ing into oncoming traffic.
I was shaken to my very core.
What if I was looking at my phone?
What if my kids were in the car?
Twice in one week, I had two very real frights in my car and the effect was lasting. After near miss number two, I become seriously lost. That lost feeling, really overwhelmed me, nailing the third vulnerability in the week. I was scared to look at my phone for my maps, I was late for a consult, my nerves were absolutely wrecked but a half an hour later, I found myself at my destination and didn’t think about it again. I threw myself into my work, raced off after to visit a friend and then recorded in the studio for Kinwomen.
For a few days I didn’t even think about what happened and then yesterday morning I started to unravel. I kept the wheels spinning, I kept on moving and when I stopped, I realised I had a flat tyre on the inside and it had leaked all my courage out.
The vulnerability of that place of anxiety, reminded me of all those years ago when I came close to having a breakdown. The panic attacks, the sleepless nights, crying so hard that I was unsure if I would ever stop.
Anxiety is real.
Yesterday was not a great day on many fronts, but I decided to get back up again, with some great friends who walked with me and listened. An amazing partner who talked till all hours of the night last night, until I found the words to voice where my fear was coming from.
I gave my anxiety and fear a voice and expression. I dug deep and allow safe people into that place of vulnerability.
The in-between places bring such anxiety, fear and real insecurity into our days.
I have been looking forward to the release of Brene Brown’s new offering Rising Strong which was released today. She calls these moments in our lives, face down moments. I have had many moments like this. Times when I dare greatly and life tries to take me out. I fail, I fall flat on my face, I am full of fear and then decide to have a go again.
When we deny the story, it defines us. When we own the story, we can write a brave new ending.
When we face our anxieties, when we share the load of what is happening for us with safe people, our story is faced and we own it.
Today is a great new day. One with a brave new ending.
The reason why I am sharing these tales of weakness and vulnerability, is even though I may sound like I have it together on these pages, I face weakness, fear and anxiety. I worry about what people think, I suffer from vulnerability hangovers, but I still decide to show up. I decide to process and face those places of pain.
I chose to replace them with moments of honesty and courage.
No matter what you are facing in your today, fear and anxiety is real and my prayer is that you would seek a brave new ending.
Own your story.
Find the grace in the midst of the dark places.
Philippians 4 is my go to chapter of scripture in these times of pressure.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
It goes on to talk about a peace that will surpass understanding that guards our hearts and minds.
Who doesn’t want that kind of peace?
For the anxious out there today, I hear you.
Don’t give up.