Fear Free Spree

This is the post excerpt.



I stood in front of the FDR memorial and read the quote inscribed in granite, “The only thing you have to fear is fear itself.” It sounded great in high school and looked even better on a monument. My question now that I am older is, is it true? Fear is sometimes just there to protect us and to keep us safe. However, there is a time when we must take flight on this journey to live our lives. Anxiety tries to keep us from experiencing the adventures that could be a wonderful part of our experience. I am not sure about just fear itself but I know I fear a lot of things, even if mildly. This blog is my journey to have some fun as I overcome some of my everyday fears. I may be uncomfortable and talk in run on sentences at a rapid rate when I feel awkward or extremely out of place even if I am trying to look extremely chill. Finally, there are those things I avoid doing out of everyday fears that seep into my life. I do not want to live in any spirit of timidity but to live a life where I thrive. Where will this road take me from my decided assignments to assignments? Ultimately, I am not sure, but starting this blog is me stepping out. Now onto finding these everyday fears that I currently avoid so you can follow along beside me on this journey. Please feel free to send me your thoughts.

#thriftyregifter #leahporter #anxiety #wellness #mentalhealth #everydayfear #fearblog

Going to the Car Wash

Yes, seriously. This is in my everyday fear blog. Let me explain how such an everyday thing belongs here. I have either hand washed my car or drove my car through the car wash for years. However, I was always a bit scared to use the high power sprayer or vacuum and wash it myself. I am conquering fears and living more frugally so off I went. I put those quarters in and set out to clean my car. The end result after my time ran out is hardly the point. Thank goodness. Just as anybody conquering a new sport, I must work on my speed as well as timing. I sprayed, scrubbed, rinsed, and need to do it again but it was in reality, fairly easy. Twenty years of driving and I am living proof and ready to admit folks. It is not a big deal to get out of your own car and wash it at the car wash. You save a little money and even get a little exercise. In fact, you need to move a little fast so it is a great, productive way to get in a little more activity. Imagine that. I came, I washed, and I conquered the car wash challenge. Look out. You never know what could be next. I sense a cooking challenge coming on.

#fearblog #leahporter #thriftyregifter #mentalhealth #anxiety #everydayfear #carwash #dailyactivity #dailymovement

Me? Swimsuit?

So because wellness has been a journey for me, I wanted to do a little photo shoot in honor of my progress. I modeled in a “swim suit” and if you wish to learn more and see the rest of the photos, read on. A fear of being in a swimsuit grew to be even more true after gaining a significant amount of weight due to a medical reason after high school. I also dress fairly conservative anyway so, regardless, swimsuits feel a little odd. However, I love the water but found myself avoiding anything that involved it. Often, if the event involves water then the swimming suit might be involved, unless you plan on being anything more than a bystander. I am happy to tell you that this fear that kept me in bystander mode was demolished in a day with a little problem solving. Yoga pants became a bigger thing and I saw them everywhere. It hit me, I could wear those in the pool and still move freely. If I want my arms covered I have the option to wear a tighter fitting yoga or exercise top or if not, still wear my swim suit top which is a one piece with separates. Since this discovery, I have participated fully in a family beach vacation and multiple water events. In my family, it is just a fact that I am the absolute heaviest person with men included. It can be intimidating when there is a beach destination wedding or pool party. At the destination wedding, I did not ever fear showing my body in “my” suit and it helped the cool water feel more comfortable. I was happy to jump in the waves and play on the beach. This suit moves, dries and behaves a lot like swim suit material. My ideal pants would be lycra based with a similar top that has sleeves. I have seen similar sun protection tops like this for children but not adults. Other options depending on your shape and/or comfort level might include tighter fitted athletic shorts out of a similar material or the yoga bottoms with a bikini top. The color options are endless and you can purchase a pair fairly cheaply. There even ended up being added bonuses: less sunscreen and overall maintenance to get ready to go swimming. I often thought getting ready for the pool was more difficult than the activities in the pool itself. Swimming is a great option for movement, that I no longer avoid. Also, I think I look a little like a surfer or paddle boarder which is totally awesome, dude!

#fearblog #everydayfear #anxiety #mentalhealth #swimming #swimsuit #wateractivity #yogapants #wellness

Lady On the Run

On your mark. Get Set. Run and hide. The majority of my activity post high school was not out in public. Exercise videos, gym memberships used just in January, and attempts to “get into shape” here and there with various means made up my intermittent sporadic routines. I hated working out in front of people. My workouts were hermit quality with a desire to be free of my shell. My fears dealt with performance, weather, and the idea that other people might actually see me moving. So for this fear challenge, I set up my sprinting cones on a humid night near the highway. Family drove by (Eeek), strangers, and the neighbors played across the road. I ran as fast as I could go and sensed a little anxiety when a car drove by but still I ran. My heart pounded, I sweated, and I felt sheepishly proud. My hope is to take this activity up to the next level of everyday fear, the park. I always think those people in the outdoor yoga classes are so brave!

#fearblog #everydayfear #thriftyregifter #running #run #anxiety #mentalhealth #wellness #living #joyful

Craftier Than You Think

I always get big ideas for upcycling projects. The problem comes in my follow through. There is always someone better at these things or I fear it will be too big of a task beyond my level of expertise. It is easy to build this task up in my head as a giant monster with three heads that eats crafting posers for breakfast. Projects sit undone as they wait and wait for a little love. My commitment was to do one of my projects off my list weekly. After a consult with a talented friend, I went to work with some determination. This island needed some tender loving care on the back side. It will be facing the main living space and I wanted it to pop with a little color as well as shine with some design. Often the fear of starting a project or the work it will entail is worse than the actual process. As it began to take shape and I started painting, I found my groove. This process was relaxing and the finished product made me proud. My fear turned into a sense of feeling productive as well as having a sense of accomplishment. As a bonus, I even liked the final result.

#fear #anxiety #fearblog #everydayfear #thriftyregifter #mentalhealth #crafts #craftprojects #livinglife #risktaking

Row Row Row Your Boat

I kayaked! I found ways to problem solve, overcome fears and finally just go for it. For years there were numerous things that stopped me from this activity. Basic stuff. I was so disappointed when I got lost and did not get to attend my kayaking course. I made a plan to get out there despite of that. A few fears remained but I was determined to persevere. It is not my favorite thing to ask people to borrow things, but I called a friend with a kayak and asked. My friend was gracious and willing to allow me to use it so I made a time to pick it up. It was important for me to set an actual time so my goal had a deadline. It was also important to push through a few obstacles such as transport of the kayak, having a flotation device, and mentally preparing myself for the adventure rather than continuing to just see problems and give up. With some assistance from family, I was out on the lake and here’s the best part. It was a little scary at first to be unsure of the boat rocking and have some fear that I might tip it. However, once I started paddling and felt comfortable, it was so relaxing. I felt free and had such an amazing time. I paddled from one side to the other and felt the breeze on my face. A dragon fly flew around me, the clouds reflected in the water, and the sun danced across the water as it set and it was time to row my boat safely to shore way too soon.

#thriftyregifter #leahporter #anxiety #mentalhealth #everydayfear #wellness #kayaking #adventure #lake

Resting Uneasily

This may seem out of place for a fear blog, but for many people that struggle with anxiety, it can be brought from various places. I had been sick and rather than pushing through, I gave myself permission to take it easy. In fact, tomorrow I will probably make sure to rest a little more than usual too. There is pressure to juggle so much that when I need to rest it makes me anxious. What would people think if they knew I did nothing? Would I be considered boring or lazy? It was nice to decide not to stress about any of that and just relax. I napped for hours, did some quiet work in bed, and ate those comfort foods marketed to the ill. To my surprise, at the end of the day, I was feeling so much better and was thankful that I had listened to what my body needed. Yes, there was a list of chores to do, but I think letting go of the fears and allowing myself to rest to take care of myself was a wonderful choice. A choice that will lead me to feeling back to my usual self sooner than fighting against the idea of taking time to recover and rest easy.

#thriftyregifter #leahporter #everydayfear #anxiety #mentalhealth #wellness #resting #selfcare

Fearing the Unknown: Kayaking Not as Planned

When I realized that I finally had an address in hand without a map, I wanted to give up. My phone was not working properly and I wanted to crawl inside my shell, go home, and not even try to go on this adventure that I had planned. I had a kayaking class to attend with the Conservation Department. I stopped to get directions and met a lady who was nice and willing to help me. She got me on the right path and eventually to the address but the delays and getting lost made me late. Not only late, but the kayak group was nowhere in sight. They had paddled away or I was still at the wrong lake. Either way, I was dismayed as I looked at beautiful open waters with a couple of bass boats. This was something that was going to be truly significant to me. As I explored the area, I noticed some trails, but did not notice until later that they were for ATV’s. However, this rebel got in an off terrain hike, and some time in nature and luckily did not see an ATV this evening. The drive and music ended up being nice too, but more importantly I could of given up and been too embarrassed to try to make part of the class, but I was glad that I at least tried. I would have never known if I retreated from the start back into the shell when faced with adversity. Being determined will eventually get me on a kayak, and I will bust through this everyday fear. It was certainly an adventure, either way. Stay tuned.

#thriftyregifter #leahporter #everydayfear #fearblog #kayaking #adventure #wellness #mentalhealth #anxiety #newthings