1) Spider spiders spiders....(shivers)... I have a long history with not squaring off well with spiders. I was maybe 5 when my back was itching and I had my sister age 3 take a look. She screamed "a fider, a fider." That set off a series of screams from me crying to my mom and while it was a tick and not a spider, I never did recover. The other most terrifying moment relates to these creepies was living alone and not having my Dad to take care of them. Lets just say Aussie spritzer goes a long way and freezing them where they are. Worked for me for years. But then there was that moment as I watched my two year old daughter, at the time, climb on her tricycle and a massive spider was hanging on the handle. In those brief 3 seconds I had to face my fears with 2 choices....leave my child at the mercy of hoping the creature would drop a web and fall away or become Mommie Spiderslayer. I jerked my daughter from the tricycle kicking it across the room, making my daughter cry and the spider scamper away to hide. I couldn't make my voice work to warn her and afterwards I had to sit because the adrenaline in my body had surged. I DON'T DO SPIDERS AND THE QUICKEST WAY TO YOUR OWN DEATH IS TO BRING ONE NEAR ME.
2) Scary Movies. I loved the scariest of movies as a teen though at the time I wasn't allowed to watch R rates movies. Since when do teenagers always follow the rules? So one night when my parents were gone for the evening and my sister was at a friends for the night, I turned on THE SHINING. That was not a wise decision and I had never been so happy to see my parents come home though I couldn't tell them why I had every light in the house on and every bolt locked down tight. I believe on of the scariest movies I ever saw was TERROR TRAIN with Jaime Lee Curtis. My sister and I watched this one too...when we weren't suppose to and it scared us out of our minds for weeks. So I continued my trend of scary movies until I lived alone in my own home. Then it got real. No more scary movies for me.
3) Interestingly enough another thing that scares me to death is public speaking. I taught nursing classes for over 28 years but teaching what I know is not like speaking to a crowd. I have always avoided obligations where I am asked to speak unless it was very important to me or I was given no choice. Those moments I can stress over for weeks and I have been told I am silly over and over by people who do not understand the true terror for me. I am a total INTROVERT. My cup is not filled by being around people. I have had to work at that for years. Those who have no true understanding of being Introverted have often told me " to just get over it"...it doesn't work that way. My first experience of true terror was at 4 years old when my parents had me a birthday party for the first time with neighborhood kids. I cried when they sang Happy Birthday and I think tried to crawl under the table. I am 51 and I have never had another birthday party like that again. My mom would ask me about a birthday party and I would say no. My husband and kids know I want Mexican food for my birthday supper but they had best not have the waitress bring cake and slap a sombrero on my head. They know I will walk right out the door if it is too intense. For real.
4) FLYING. I will fly because sometimes it is the only way to get to places I need to go. Before I board a plane there is always a sheer moment of terror that can halt me from functioning normally or thinking right. After spending a small non-refundable fortune to get to an event I must attend it would be difficult to back out. Each time I get to my seat and I do make sure I have an isle seat near an exit I feel claustrophobic enough to think of bolting no questions asked. I have once given up my seat to take a later flight but the terror was still the same. I am not a drinker but there have been times when I was waiting to board that I have thought about a couple of shots of tequila though that might truly worsen the effects. Lets just say when I must fly, my relationship with God grows stronger to say the least.
5) Finishing the next book. Yes, this is a real fear and I have even heard seasoned authors speak to this. I have completed through publication two books and as I spend time now working on book three of the series I sometimes go through moments of panic that maybe I won't finish the story and if I do will it be good enough for my readers. I glance at the print books I have completed and remember when writing them I went through the same thoughts of not thinking I could complete them. Sometimes as I read back through them I panic even more...DID I REALLY WRITE THIS? Because it always seems my current story will never get there or until it is finished the moments of panic can be crippling. I suppose this can be self defeating but maybe for me that edge of fear pushes me to write a story better or give it more than I knew I had. Not sure but this is a true fear.
So there you have it. 5 things that frighten me. Have a great Halloween!!