Fear and Love on the Road

Article     Rova Magazine (Excerpt)

Fear is weird. 
It’s messy and complicated.
 It doesn’t care about your feelings or your plans.
 It will burn the whole house down if you let it.

Fear is a primary emotion and incredibly humanizing. It's a survival tool that has kept our civilization alive.

But for me, it gets out of hand. It plays with my mind, and it loves to tell me NO. It tries to convince me to turn back around.
For me, fear is something I often wrestle with because I live on the road.
My husband, three kids and I left our cozy suburban life for a year-long trip in our Airstream. We sold our quaint mid-century home in Southern California to head out into the unknown. We left our beds and walls; we left our backyard and the way it smelled fresh and wild. We left family and friends, and schools, and soccer, and carpools and exchanged it all to roam free. We want to see beauty, to come closer as a family of five and experience something unique together.

Maybe it’s dangerous, and maybe I’ll get hurt, maybe my kids will turn out strange and need therapy after this, maybe someone will need emergency services, maybe I’ll find myself changing a tire in the dark, while it rains, no, snows, wait... hails lobsters! I’ve thought of all the scenarios, even ones involving land roving seafood, and I’ve still decided to press on.

I’m always trying to walk the line between fear and love. I’m forever attempting to amplify love’s voice louder to drown out fear’s cautionary warnings.

Ideally, I would identify with being adventurous; my blood is wild. I am free, screaming into a canyon, jumping off cliffs and writing passionate words on my hands and feet. In reality, I am a mother of three young kids. I always give fear a place at the table. I calculate all the dangers before jumping. I make sure that no one runs through the tall grass because of ticks and OMG Lyme Disease!! Nobody can jump off rocks, because they’ll slip and break their ankle! Don’t dive in that lake it has leaches! I mean, that last example makes good sense, right? Who wants to emerge from a lake covered in leeches? Not me.

I asked my daughter what she does when she feels scared. She shrugged her shoulders and then answered plainly, “I take a deep breath and then do it.” Like it’s that simple. But sometimes it is that simple. Just take a breath and walk through it.
“But what if the thing you’re doing is super duper scary?” I pressed her.
“I think about how good I feel after. That helps me not think about how afraid I am. Like, if I'm climbing a tree, all I think about is getting to the top, and what it's going to look like up there, and I don't look down."