Fearful Eyes

May 19, 2010
By , Mesa, AZ
For the reason that fears were brought into this world, we may never know. Some may say that without fear, our strength of mind would never expand. Others might say that if fear were a nonentity, confidence would be the same. As for me…confidence was a characteristic that I had long since known. It was something that I lacked in circumstances like these; these meaning, being plat-formed hundreds of feet up in the air dangling from an un-worthy rope in the forests of a foreign country, and having a native behind your back telling you to jump; yeah right.
It all happened at the age of eight. I was in the heart of Costa Rica with my family, when they announced a decision I thought I would regret for the rest of my life. The words “We are going zip-lining” sputtered out of all their mouths. My mind started twirling like a ballerina in the Nutcracker as my fear of heights began to crawl over my mind. “I’m not going…I can’t…I won’t…what are they trying to do to us...this is like pleading for death!”
After a lot of tears, begging, and quarreling, somehow my dad managed to get me buckled up in a car and drive the tedious three hours to the “death forest”. I must admit that time sped by me, and what seemed like minutes later, I was gripping the rope stretched out in front of me, with my family cheering me from below, looking like ants they were so far beneath me. The 30-year-old stranger behind me began to bawl she was so scared, wow…that made me feel a whole lot better. I almost began to bawl right along with her, until my tears were refrained because the instructor’s count-down had just gotten to zero.

I felt an enormous, strong hand push on my back, and I was up in the air. I literally felt like I was flying, as the breeze rushed through the strands of blonde on my head, and I moved swiftly through the air. Until that moment, it never really occurred to me how an eagle felt as it soared through an un-known world to humans; the sky. The fear I had once thought completely inhabited my body, was now beginning to be kicked out, as excitement began to take its place. I think I could do this more often, I thought to myself.
Too soon enough, my feet landed on a firm foundation, and I was back on land. My journey had ended, and to my surprise I was disappointed of the limited time I had just had on that zip-line. I never thought that just a few minutes could pass as quickly and incredibly as those did. But to my biggest surprise, I had just faced my biggest fear; heights.
I can still remember my family cheering all the way home. Their claps and screams of pride and joy for me were very pleasing. But I have to admit that if there was one person there who was the most proud, it would have been me. It’s not an easy thing to do, facing your fears. And sometimes the opportunities come in the most unpleasant ways. As for me, I had the opportunity fall before me in a way that was unforgettable. I recognized that I had been a lucky one. And I will never let this memory slip from my mind: the memory of looking up at the zip line, and knowing I had just conquered its dangerous features. But there was a difference from looking at the rope for the first time, and looking at it for the last time. At first I looked up at the zip line with fear bulging from my eyes, but this time, that zip line looked down at me, with fear in it’s strands knowing I was the stronger one.

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