It cripples us and causes us to entertain irrational thoughts. It blinds us from truth and holds us captive. Because of it, we become stand-still, unable to move - or we are the polar opposite, shrieking, running, and shoving our way out. It keeps us imprisoned without the use of chains, locks, or bars.
These are the reactions to a monster we all face - no one is exempt from being held in its clutches.
Its name is Fear.
There are various types of fears. Some are rational: large snakes, the dark, heights. These can give us a healthy respect to potential dangers and can cause us to be careful when engaging in activities where they are present. Other fears are more unique: clowns, tight spaces, dogs. They may seem ridiculous to others, but are often instilled in us due to personal experiences.
Then there are larger fears. When - and how - will I die? What if my mom or dad is seriously injured at work? What if my spouse someday cheats on me? What if the kids get abducted while at prescho…
The neighborhood I live in is locally known for housing many people with significant mental disabilities. Having worked at the coffee shop nearby, I've quickly gotten to know a number of these people and form relationships on a regular basis.
As I was walking to school earlier this week, I came across one of these gentlemen - whose conversation with me would include one of the most profound statements I've heard in a long time.