There are a number of things that people are terrified of. Most things that are listed when people mention their fears are spiders, snakes, heights, small spaces, and flying. Some people are afraid of dogs or germs. What most people don't list are the ones that are more personal. Those fears that we keep locked up deep down inside. You know the ones, those little thoughts that creep in during the middle of the night. Some are small, manageable, and we can easily conquer. Things like "Oh, crap, did I turn off the oven?" are easily remedied by simply checking. Others are a little harder to conquer such as the ever-present "Am I parenting right?" question. The following are a few of my deeper fears. Hopefully, in writing them out, it'll make them easier to deal with. Also, if you feel the same, you'll know you aren't alone with these feelings.

My first fear I've already mentioned. I constantly worry that somehow the things that I do are going to screw my kid up. I worry that not always forcing him to try new foods will lead to him not getting the nutrition he needs. I'm terrified that even though I work on school-based activities at home, he'll fall behind. I'm constantly thinking about all of the what-ifs at the playground, grocery store, and home. Does letting him learn the hard way after I already explained things a handful of times mean that I'm not patient enough? Does having him help with chores teach him responsibility or do they just set more into his routine? With all of the parenting journals and advice all over the place, it's easy to start feeling overwhelmed. The only way that I've found to quiet this fear, at least for a little while, is to remind myself that my son is happy and healthy.

Another fear that I've yet to conquer is the overwhelming fear of failure. For me, failing is the worst thing that I can do. Try and try again is something that I teach my son but have yet to utilize for myself. The fear of failing seems for me to stem back from the need to exceed in school. Currently, starting my Master's Degree, I've found that with life occurring around me that the courses are a little bit more taxing than I thought they would be. Fearing the failure that comes with not being able to handle the course load leads to even more fear. I actually had a colleague recommend a helpful strategy for some. She recommended taking the assignments one step at a time for each individual assignment until you felt in control. Unfortunately, it doesn't work for me, but hopefully, it'll come in handy for you faithful readers.

The last fear that I try not to own up to is that I fear to ask for help. I constantly struggle with my need for help on things versus the perception it puts in my head of myself. In my head, needing help paints me as weak or stupid. As the need for help increases, my fear of asking grows. It maybe that I don't like to be vulnerable to people or it maybe that I'm afraid of what people MAY think of me for needing help. Whatever the reason, the fear is overwhelming. While I have no issue with helping others out when they need it, I'm terrified of asking for reciprocation.

We all have different fears, just like we all have different dreams. If you're battling your own fears, know that someone out there is rooting for you. Someone is hoping you overcome those fears or is going through something similar. Maybe writing them down will help you. Maybe forcing yourself to confront what really makes you afraid will help you learn more about yourself. Either way, I wish you the best of luck.