If you've known me for sometime, or during the summer at least, you know that I struggle with a fear of water. Why? I had an accident and now I'm scarred, you don't need to know my life. Damn. Anyway, I'm scared. Remember that.
I've had many people tell me that I need to just jump in and overcome that fear. I've been told that it's a useless fear, so before I continue, here is what I have to say about that: You're dumb.
We should all be terrified of water. Water knows how powerful it is. It knows enough to be nice and inviting with its cooling properties and it knows that we can't live without it. Water draws you in and lets you play around, but as soon as you disrespect it or forget how much power it has over you, it sucks you in and tries to kill you. In my case, it was satisfied with traumatizing me for life.
So what's it like to be scared of something so abundant? Terrible. If you're scared of heights, you know the feeling I get when I'm near a large body of water. I'm scared of heights as well, so I'm practically a professional when it come to the rational phobias.
This past weekend, I went up to my friend's lake house. When it came time to go canoeing and swimming, I made the decision to fake it until I made it. I was not scared of water that weekend. For the most part, it worked. I was able to swim around and jump into the lake, but mind you, it took about 5 or 6 years for me to build up the courage.
I'm still scared of water, but at least now I can get in without crying. I just need to have complete control over my situation, a.k.a. don't push me in because I will drown, die, come back, and haunt you from my watery grave.
Don't tell anyone that their fear of water is dumb because as far as I'm concerned, that fear is completely rational. Give them time and give them space, they'll get there eventually.