The Deep Dark Waters of Fear

August 10, 2017





I've been thinking a lot, and this post is serious. There will be posts coming up that are fun, to catch up on all the tags I haven't done, there are going to be happy reflections but this post is to go through something that has been heavily on my mind and also in my late experiences.
Something that doesn't just hold me, but I am certain...holds many of you too.

Imagine yourself in an indoor competition pool. 
It's a bit dark, unfamiliar
You've never ever been there before.
The only part of the pool available is the deep end
12 feet deep.
"No problem, I can swim" you think.

Your siblings are there, or if you don't have siblings imagine really close friends. Reliable ones. You can't really be very stressed when you have those around.

You look around, at all the "Won the ___ championship" banners that run along the wall. 
"Hey, hey... someone cap me." you call to the friends/siblings that are already in the water.

Then you put the goggles on. The dark tinted ones.
No problem, you're used to it, it'll be better underwater.

Then you jump in and the sound of laughter and "Bruh, deal with it." resounds at your shrieks of "Man, it's cold!"

Then you slide underwater. If you could whistle underwater it'd be happening now. "Whew, deep!" Is the thought that comes to mind. You pop up to the surface for a deep breath.

 "Let's try to touch the bottom!" Someone challenges.

"Yeah let's!"

"Meh, ok...it's harder than it looks." 

So a deep breath and you dive in. The lungs scream, but you're used to it and you keep going. "Eep, well that's that"you think as  you come close to touching the bottom but not quite, you push up wildly gasping for air as you break the surface.

More laughs and more challenges. Succesions.

So what's your point? Anna, why in the world are you telling me this? 
I know it's a bit strange...but be patient, I'm getting there.

Then you switch, to the lanes...cause you're a swimmer and you need to start practicing for the next season. Like REALLY.

"Ugh man, I'm so out of shape." You remark to your lane buddy which is your sister. "Can't even stay underwater a few second without coming up in gasps."

Enough slacking, let's go. And you push of the wall and freestyle...easy steady pace, it's only a warm up.

And that's when it starts.
When you have to keep going 
But your chest burns
Your muscles burn
It's cold and deep
It's unfamiliar
It's creepy.
And every time you desperately turn your head to breath it remind you of how 
you should be able to breath every three or four.
But you can't
 And the little kids can
But you can't
And the bottom is so far down
And the goggles make it dark
 And what's most creepy of all
The feeling that your lungs are going to burst
And your muscles know so much more strain
But everything aches
It feels like imminent death
And the stomach begins cramping 
With fear and pain
Just a warm up
Then you reach the end.

"Wow, I'm out of shape." Is all the remark you give to your lane buddy.

But it's definitely not all you're feeling inside

You're feeling the deep, dark waters of fear

And it feels like you're dying

Inadequacy

I'm getting there. 
Do you get it?
Fear drowns you
Inside...

Let's back up, back to when I was little. Maybe six? Something like that...but that's not the point...

 It's a flash but I remember. Two things. 
One - Swim lessons.

The instructor was strict, not mean just stern.
I remember...water was creepy, not breathing was creepy
I felt inadequate
Just Six.
 But I felt it.
I felt my flailing head and feet
I was clumsy
I knew it
And I felt awful
But...you have to keep going...right?
So I just did.
I hated swimming, I told my Daddy.
But he said...you have to learn to swim, my love.
I whined, but you know...I was scared, just didn't want to say it.

Two -One night...

One night
Worst lesson I ever had probably
 Overhearing that instructor tell my parents
That my two younger siblings were pretty good swimmers
And giving them both a lollipop  
But he didn't say anything about me
I didn't want a lollipop
I just wanted hope
But after all...it was the truth.
I wasn't a great swimmer.

 So why do I swim? Why!? Why in the world do you do something that scares you, that makes you feel that way?

Because I want to face my fears
 I can't back down
I'm not a good swimmer
I know that
But I'm better than yesterday

And I want to keep getting better

Those waters they scare me, Oh how they scare me! those deep, dark waters of fear

But I can't give in
 I have to keep going

I'm slow, so much worse than everyone else 

But I can't stop
Otherwise I lose, to myself

You see, if you should know anything about me
I can lose to others, any day. But I can't lose to myself. I've let it happened but I can't keep it that way. I MUST win.

No...trust me it's not pride.
 It's either fear or me.
And the fear's not winning, not today.

Not tomorrow... 

Will you let the fear win? Or will you fight?
I believe you can fight. I believe you can win.
Don't you give up sister
Don't you give up brother
Keep going.
 

 The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
    my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
    my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
(Psalm 18:2) 

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26 comments

  1. Beautiful. This was one of those posts that feel sad, yet uplifting. While I can't really apply it to swimming, I can apply it to my fears. My fears of the unknown. My fears of what God is calling me to, which is something I'm terrified of.
    I think this is a wonderful post. Amazing job. The pictures you used were amazing, too. :)

    iviewrites.blogspot.com

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    1. Thank you so much Ivie...it was just so heavy on my heart, and I feel like confronting it instead of letting it float around and eat me was incredibly freeing. And definitely...this isn't just about swimming, it's about anything that plagues us with fear, uncertainty, dread. It's knowing that we have God on our side and we are so much stronger than we feel. <3

      Thank you Ivie! I got them from Unsplash, its the new website I found for stock free photos because I was getting a bit bored with pexels all the time. They have great stuff! Check them out :)

      Again thanks so much for reading and commenting, it always means a lot <3

      Blessings xox

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    2. I will definitely check them out. Thank you!
      God is so much stronger than we are and He gives us strength.
      Its always good to let your emotions show and not keep them inside. (Coming from someone who internalizes and wishes she could show more emotion than she does.)

      :)

      iviewrites.blogspot.com

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    3. True words Ivie! And yes I admit it's really hard to open up sometimes but it's always worth it <3 Scary...but not bad to do! :)

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  2. Woah, Anna-this was incredibly beautiful, and completely true. It was also really encouraging. Keep it up!
    ~Mira

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    1. AHH Thank you so much Mira! <3 That means a lot.

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    2. P.S. If you feel like doing it, I nominated you for the Sunshine Blogger Award! Go to my blog to check it out.

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    3. Thanks Mira! That's two nominations for the same tag lol, that definitely means I need to do it.

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  3. Deep post, Anna - no pun intended.

    I can definitely relate to a lot of what you said. I used to take swim lessons at the Y all the time. I did ok...until I got to around the age of 10-11. Then my endurance took a bad nose dive. I couldn't swim those laps, I couldn't pass up to the next level. Let me tell you - for someone that was used to passing with flying colors, that was tough to deal with. I still need those reminders...

    Catherine
    catherinesrebellingmuse.blogspot.com

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    1. I feel you Catherine, I finished swimming at about seven and my Dad got me back in at sixteen. You can imagine what kind of a gap I had there...I protested at first, let's say it wasn't originally my choice. But now it is, to me it's not even about swimming, it's about tackling what you're given and doing the best you can...even though you feel so inadequate many times.

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    2. And thank you for commenting and reading <3

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  4. This is so beautiful, Anna. Thank you.

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  5. Awesome post!:)
    And your writing is beautiful .

    -Quinley

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    1. Wow thank you so much Quinley <3

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  6. LOVE. Beautiful. Your writing is lovely. :-)

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    1. THANK YOU <3 This is why it's worth sharing stuff with you all! It means alot more than you know. <3

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  7. I just visited your blog from your lovely comment on mine!
    Wow I love this. I took swim lessons when I was little, but I had a really bad experience with a teacher that forced me into the 12 foot water when I was terrified and didn't feel ready. Ever since then, I have been afraid of deep water, and I am trying to work past that. I am so proud of you for not giving up. Keep up the hard work, girl!! You'll get there! ♥

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    1. You found me :) and I'm so glad because I really love your blog so much.

      Oh boy that's awful and should have never happened <3 things like that can brand you for life! Thank you so much girl <3...you have no idea how much that means to me <3 It surprised me how many people had something to say about water...I just wrote this post as a release and I didn't think many people would relate literally but God knows better!

      Again thanks for reading and commenting Megan, I'm so happy to see you here ^.^ xox

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  8. This is lovely, Anna. <3

    xoxo Abigail Lennah | ups & downs

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  9. Wow, I am reading so many posts on fear recently. I think there's a lesson I need to learn. God is bigger, so much bigger than our fears, if only I would remember. That verse you finished with was perfect.

    I like the way this flowed. It was like visual imagery where the process of reading adds to the content (does that even make sense?).

    And good on you for facing your fears and choosing courage. Keep it up. xx

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    1. That's so true Jessica, we so often forget how much more powerful God is than we give Him credit for.
      It makes sense because I was really trying to get that, so the compliment means a lot :)
      You too Jessica, you're incredible xxx <3 Your words are always beyond encouraging to me, thank you so much for reading and commenting.

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  10. Your posts are always so beautiful and full of truth! <3 <3 <3

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    1. Thank you so much Melissa ^.^ <3 That means a lot.
      And thanks for always reading and commenting. It's lovely of you <3 :)

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Hi! Thank you so much for your comments, they always make my day. xoxo. I allow anonymous users to comment on my blog, but any crass, profane, pointless criticism and mean comments will be deleted. Remember to check back or click notify because I reply to all of my comments!
Have a Blessed day <3

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