I have been thinking about fear lately.  I haven’t been feeling like myself for a few weeks, and I realized that fear has been playing a big roll in that.  This is strange for me because in general, I’m not a super fearful person, and for the most part I’d say I’m comfortable being myself.  The past couple weeks have been different.

At first I thought it was stress, new job, new diet, bills, etc.  I tried to address those issues head on.  Scheduled payments, blogged about diet stuff, looked up recipes, started organizing and cleaning stuff at work (this typically always helps me clear my head).  None of which helped for longer than a day or so.  So I was floating through life in the midst of a gray cloud.  I prayed about it before getting out of my car to go to work one day last week and almost immediately as I walked in I realized what my issue had been.

I was afraid of not being good enough, afraid I’d never get out of debt, afraid that my career is stagnating, afraid that I don’t have what it takes to excel.  This was the mental cloud surrounding me.  This cloud caused me to keep most people at a distance, overly measure my words and behavior, and become paranoid that people around me were out to get me.  These fears caused me to tell myself lies that, if believed, would cause me to challenge my own idea of who I am.  I was really amazed at how deep I had allowed these lies to permeate my psyche; They were affecting my behavior and decision making. It’s kind of like when I got glasses, the second time.

The first time I was prescribed glasses was one week before I left for college.  I didn’t have a super strong prescription.  It was just enough to go ahead and get them, after all, I was going to be 8 hours from home and going to a fancy liberal arts college, so better safe than sorry.  There wasn’t a huge life changing ordeal like some of you went through when you finally got glasses (like finally being able to see the leaves on a tree)  It was just nice that I didn’t get headaches after reading for a long time.

Fast forward 7 years, 4 sets of frames (either lost or eaten by Lucie), and 3 different insurance changes, It was time for me to find an optometrist in Seattle that I liked.  My friend Hayley went to a place in Wallingford that she likes, and I trust her so I went.  This was the life changing visit I missed out on earlier.
What Dr. Ono told me was to stop trying to read the chart and to just tell him what I saw.  Every single eye test I had taken in the past I had tried my hardest to “pass” it.  Turns out, it’s not that kind of test.  So I just took a deep breathe, sighed and admitted to the doctor that the bottom 2 lines were just blurry spots and the 3rd from the top was only slightly better.  Turns out my vision was worse than I thought but I had spent many years compensating.  I needed progressive lenses.  It’s not like I am blind as a bat; I had just learned to deal with the constant dull headache from reading a computer screen for a long time. It was a pain, a struggle, a distraction that I didn’t even realize that I was dealing with anymore because it was just always there.
I miss those sweet blue frames

I calmed down and stop trying to overcome these issues that I had been having, just long enough to admit that I needed help.  Help came, I got the correct prescription, and the headaches went away, I wanted to read more.  It was like a weight that I had forgotten that I was carrying was finally lifted.

My backpack was stolen out of my car last February, and my glasses were in there, so I currently don’t have any glasses but that is a different issue.  Back to the situation at hand.

All of these lies and fears had me all twisted up to the point where I was constantly cloudy.  When I walked in to work that day, the skies began to clear.  Did I still have bills?  sadly yes.  Did I still have frustrations at work?  sure did.  None of my problems went away, but they didn’t define me.  They didn’t control me.  So God answered my prayer with truth and a reminder of who I am.  I’m his, he loves me, and he has put me in the world, in Seattle, at my job, in my community, for a reason.  I believe that reason is to help people.  It’s a perfectly vague purpose to hold onto, because I can connect with it no matter where I am.  It’s especially perfect for being in the service industry because when you get down to the basics, is literally serving others.So to get out of this funk, I have been trying to help people more often, and as I’m writing this today, I’m feeling much better.  Now I just need to get a new pair of glasses.

So, fight fear with truth.  Have a fantastic week!

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