Seven years old.
The doctor's office.
Anxiety pounded in my stomach like rock-hard butterflies ramming themselves into my insides.
Twelve years old.
Laying wide awake at midnight on the sofa in the living room.
Fear paralyzing me every night that someone might break into our home and hurt my family.
Fear angrily stomped around in my brain, ripping the sweet rest of nightly slumber away from me for a year straight.
Fifteen years old.
In front of a crowd of people.
Gulp. I swallow hard as I feel pins and needles racing, sprinting, up and down my body, as I feel myself become light-headed.
Seventeen years old.
Wide awake in bed- again.
Tears flow freely as I worry about the day my parents, my siblings have to die.
Fear screams and yells and commands me to worry about death and my inability to cope with it.
Nineteen years old.
My car, the side of the road.
Hyperventilate. Black out. Cry. Yell for help. Shake.
Anxiety stops me in my path as I drive to school. I can't see behind my tears
and I miss school for the fifth time this week because anxiety laughs as it grips me.
Twenty-one years old.
A Walgreen's parking lot. 7 days until the wedding.
I cry as I- for the first time, verbally- admit my fear of marriage, my fear of the weight of this comittment, the fear of being in front of people, my fear of what people will think if they don't like the day we worked hard to plan.
I like my life right now. How can I know the changes to this life that I like will be GOOD changes? I'm scared, how can I know? I ask through my tears and snotty inhales.
Fear and I go way back. We're old friends. As far back as I have a memory, fear has always been there for me. A constant companion in the dark of night, the doctor's office, the classroom, in front of a crowd of people.
It's always been there to give me an excuse to approach life with a hesitancy and an uncertainity.
Besides the obvious answers like if abuse, addiction or unfaithfulness, how can any of us be sure the person we're marrying is the ONE? How can we be sure we're making the best choice? How can we know what the future holds for us in this new relationship? What if our new future is full of PAIN?
I know that our decision to marry has been showered in PRAYER by my parents, Brandon, myself, and people we love and trust. We feel God has said Yep. Go for it! and I strongly believe that God is CALLING me to this season of life.
I am still hesitant to fully lean into and trust His plan. Because here I am.
Leaning on my old friend. Fearing a marriage the Lord has lovingly called me to.
The Spirit calls me and sings this song over my heart:
God did not give me a spirit of FEAR- but a spirit of POWER, LOVE and a SOUND MIND.
Perfect love casts out fear, don't I know that?
Seven years old.