Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Overcoming Fears

For the last 6 years, I have avoided the treadmill. Tonight was the first time I have been on one since I was running on a treadmill in the Gold's Gym on 9th East in Provo and slipped. Thank goodness I was wearing pants, though the abrasion was enough to burn - not tear - burn a hole in them. 

But there are other fears I'm facing. In hopes that writing about them will aid in processing...here it goes. Early Sunday morning, there was a horrific crime in my community. Any who live near have probably heard about it. A man and his wife were on their morning walk (about 5AM) when they were severely beaten and left on opposite sides of the road a mere quarter mile from where we lived up until 2 months ago and walking distance from our present home. This couple was from my neighborhood, walking the same path that I, in my more motivated months, ran almost daily. I have seen them and shared a joggers' wave, "hello," and smile in passing. The man is now dead, and his wife is in critical condition. The perpetrators are still out there somewhere, the motive unknown. 

For the past week, I have had a huge knot in my stomach. When I drive by the site of the crime (which I do daily because it is along a main thoroughfare), I feel queasy. My quiet, safe community feels violated. I leave the house alarmed basically all day and have never been more grateful that Adam works from home. I lock the doors when I'm driving. I'm terrified for my kids, mourning for the victims, and haunted by the feeling that "it could have been me."

Today, I've had a breakthrough in overcoming this fear. I realize that I cannot allow it to rule my life. I took the kids on a walk (just around the block) and we spent our after-dinner hour outside throwing frisbees and playing in the backyard. Very therapeutic and calming. It's not that I've become foolhardy, but I am realizing that I cannot allow the bad to dictate my life and how live it. 

Which brings me back to the treadmill. In the past year of my life, I've been exercising more and my endurance has never been better physically. Since I am still unwilling to run outside, it was easy tonight to overcome my fear of treadmills and felt SO good to pound out a quick half mile's worth of angst when the elliptical left me feeling unfulfilled. 

As I was stretching, listening to Ben Folds' "The Luckiest" and "Gracie Girl" (thank you, Aaron and Katy), I got to thinking about another type of endurance...and this came to mind.

"Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and ENDURE TO THE END, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life." (2 Nephi 31:20)

And there it is. The solution. "The WAY." The remedy to this knot in my stomach. I will put my hope in Him, and slowly the fear will subside.

10 comments:

McGannTribe said...

This particular murder didn't get to me and I am not sure why. But there have been others that have gotten to me and I have felt the same way that you were feeling...knot in my stomach...couldn't stop thinking about it and fear for mine and my children's safety. Can you imagine what it would be like to NOT have the gospel in your life to rely on to bring you through moments like that? Your fear lasted for a few days and you found peace through the gospel...some people go their ENTIRE LIVES living that way. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father gives us the inspiration to seek out our comfort through the scriptures. Another testimony for daily scripture reading and prayer...when we are diligent we find our comfort much quicker b/c those verses are readily at the forefront of our minds.

Emily said...

Thanks for writing this. You just summed up my sentiments. You're such a great person, Marie!

laura said...

whoa--too scary and quite a bit too close to home!

Chelsea said...

I confronted these feelings when there was a murder just around the corner from where we lived in Alexandria. Really scary. But you're right, we can't live in fear. When I run I always carry pepper spray and that makes me feel a bit more secure.

Brady said...

An hour throwing frisbees - is there any problem it can't solve?

Playful Professional said...

I sometimes get sick and worried about things ilke this, but you're right it's all about enduring through everything, even such tragedies as this one.

Jason Acosta said...

Man, Marie, I don't even know how to begin. That is so scary, and how else could you feel-of course the thought of, "That could have been me," is what anyone would have thought. Coming from the border town of El Paso, I've never lost that feeling. Mostly it is a feeling of helplessness that is so debilitating. When we still lived in Provo I bought Heather some pepper spray and made her carry it when she jogged. I'd proabably make her carry a gun or buy her a treadmill but really, those aren't always the best options. Kudos for overcoming your fear and trying to live normally anyway. And finding help in our mutual faith. That is a perfect scritpure. Stay safe. PS, Guess what red-headed friend and her husband are coming over to dinner with us soon? Could be you shortly.....

Pwride said...

Things like that are why I want to get a dog that weighs as much for me for when I'm not home to protect my little family.

Penny said...

Marie, You are the best! What a great way to think about this.

Just Katy said...

Such a disturbing, mysterious crime. Yuck. Happy to hear you're fighting the good fight. I hope they get to the bottom of things. Until then, way to take back the streets by playing outside and going for your walk :)