Fear of helplessness

I have always had a pretty sheltered life. First it was for my parents who gave me a protective atmosphere at home. Then it was for my in-laws whom I trusted to be my defence from any external pricking and blows. And in situations where they were not able to keep up, husband became my shield. I lived in such a fortress that very little problems could penetrate deep enough to reach me. I had just 2 responsibilities – to respect my elders at home and to focus on my work at the workplace. Since I did not have to worry about anything in life I was able to do well for myself at work, for all the concentrated energies. There was, although, one aspect where now I think I lagged and it was my emotional strength. I depended heavily on my family for my emotional well-being. There is nothing wrong about it because this is the primary role family or family members play – to support each other.

But, later, when the shield got sick of protecting me, it was then I discovered my inner strength as an individual in utter loneliness. This was an attribute which I assume I had to learn the hard way and which has been playing an important part in raising Dhruv with emotional stability. Today, it is for my inner fullness that does not allow me to feel lonely even when Dhruv and I live alone in a city where we have no relatives for support and the friendships which I have formed are relatively new. 6 months back, I took this courageous decision not to accompany husband on his overseas assignment this time and stay back with Dhruv. The underlying reason was Dhruv had got adjusted in his school, therefore we did not want to disturb his schooling and also uproot our base yet again. I never did let the slightest doubt pass my mind of not being able to sustain this way.

I have a habit of creating positive thoughts throughout the day – “Things are going to be fine. We are going to keep healthy, physically and emotionally.”

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Picture Credit – Pixabay

I will not lie. Fears do creep into my mind once in a while however I make efforts by working on my mind diverting those thoughts away. The worst of fears raised its head for the first time when, one day, I found Dhruv jumping recklessly from one couch to another giving deaf ears to my cautions. At the spur of a moment, the mind painted the picture of his falling down, getting terribly hurt and blood oozing out. This picture sent shivers down my spine. The next moment I was rubbing this picture frantically leaving no spots or dots. I ran to him, pinning him down yelled at  him to be careful in the way he plays because if he gets hurt badly then what will I do, being alone and that he should play carefully and responsibly. Realising the sensitivity of the circumstance Dhruv instantly stopped jumping around.

I must have expressed my helplessness a couple of times more. It must have been totally reactionary since I do not even remember the situations now.

Last week, on the first day of his holidays, he was playing with the Lego bricks which are very small. I was busy working in the kitchen when I turned around to face the living room and saw him putting a small brick in his mouth. I panicked demanding him at the highest pitch to spit it out. The memory from my childhood returned. It was a day me and my brother were playing chinese checkers and brother wanting to show some trick, knowingly, inserted a peg into one of his nostril. On being asked by mummy to exhale it out, he inhaled and the peg went up his nasal passage. Papa was phoned to come home from office immediately and we had to rush him to the ENT specialist who was far off from our home.

I was repeating the same lecture to Dhruv of what was I going to do if that brick would have stuck in his food pipe. He replied innocently I would have taken him to the hospital.

The next morning, I was sitting in quiet and the realisation dawned. I was passing on my fear to him by reminding him repeatedly that I am weak, helpless and insecure whereas I should be the one from whom he should be drawing courage and confidence and feel secure with. I should be asking him not to be playing recklessly for the reason that it will hurt him and not for the reason that I would not be able to care for him.

Later that day, both of us watched the movie – ‘Thomas and his friends – Tale of the brave’ on DVD. There was a dialogue in it where an engine tells another engine who is feeling scared of monsters and does not want to work in the night-time. The dialogue was –

Being brave is not about not feeling afraid but what you do when you ARE feeling afraid.

19 thoughts on “Fear of helplessness

  1. Parul Thakur says:

    I loved your post. First things first – it’s honest. Second, I feel so good that you are aware. How many parents or say even humans are even thinking that our past fears are driving our actions today. I can let go my fear of driving. Some others can’t so something else. But being able to consciously tell yourself to do the right thing is amazing and I’m so proud of you. That I know you who will try to be better all the time. Good one Anamika.

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  2. Varsh says:

    All of us face such kind of fears with our kids and I guess it is alright. We just can’t let those fears dominate our lives or actions. We mean well, don’t we? 🙂

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  3. Corinne Rodrigues says:

    Our imagination sometimes have a way of running wild! I guess we all have various fears that we need to work on. I’m glad you realized that Dhruv should not perceive you as being weak and helpless, because you certainly are not! ♥

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  4. Esha Mookerjee-Dutta says:

    Another honest post from you Anamika! It is very important for us as parents not to pass on our fears to our children. It is a wonderful thing to acknowledge that as parents we also need to be aware of how our preconceived notions and our prejudices get rubbed off on our children and you’re trying to improve yourself every day, which is great for Dhruv! He is one lucky kid, I tell you.

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  5. Vasantha Vivek says:

    Anamika, we have to accept we have come across each other by destiny. Even if we were not get connected by this blogging, I strongly believe we would have got connected by some other way. Since it’s our destiny. Like that, my mind voice says that we will meet each other very soon. It’s also our destiny.

    Glad that you had a taken bold decision and happy that you could identify and conquer your fears. This is one which I failed to do a year back. I was also a home bird. I need to be in the warmth of my family and friends all time. It was like that only until we made a decision to move to South Africa with my son during November 2014. I also suffered from this fear since we were at remote place. I was continuously reminding my son about his slight higher myopia as like me. I am a voracious reader by love. But there, I could not read even a single book and can’t even sleep peacefully. This fear got intense when my hubby went to Johannesburg for 10 days official trip. I also felt very much about my worst eyesight and not knowing car driving at that time. All these fears made me so quiet abnormally and my weight reduced nearly 7 Kgs in three months. My hubby only identified that I was suffering with home sickness severely. So we took again a hard decision of returning back to India during last February. Now I am clear that my fears should not be transferred to my son. As you said, we are the courage, support and mental help for our kids. Really you are very honest in your writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • the bespectacled mother says:

      I am glad to notice an important aspect that my honest writings gives you the trust to open up your inner linings which you would not think of doing elsewhere. The other day I was thinking is it our bruises or the springing back to our core which connect us with people around us. Earlier this once month I was exploring the areas around Ooty and saw Coimbatore. Then I searched how far is it from your place and it is really far. I thought may be one day 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Sweety (Kokiash2015) says:

    What a powerful post Anamika ! .Each and ever parents has certain amount of fear about his/her child but it differs from person to person .I think it natural .
    🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. inquisitivegeet says:

    I can relate to an extent where you’re talking about the emotional dependency. My father, from the very beginning, was always very protective of me and my sister. He always made the arrangements, took decisions, handled stuff and any difficulty that was about to creep in, he would come in the way and rip it apart.
    It did protect us a lot, and hence, we had a great time growing up. But now when I think of it, I sometimes feel so weak in so many things, the inability to take the decisions to be precise. And there is this constant fear in my heart for unforeseen situations!

    Reading such an honest post, literally brought my emotions out!

    Cheers
    Geets

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Maliny Mohan says:

    It is natural to have fears about the safety of our dear ones. My father came to my mind while I read this post. He is so protective of me and I cannot thanks him enough for that. But then, it should never be to such an extent that it limits the possibilities of our ward. Very thoughtful post, anamika.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. shanayatales says:

    Parenting has a tough job description; we may not always do the right thing at the right time, but as long as we are trying our best, and are open to learn, change and grow – we are doing fine.

    And yours was a courageous decision indeed. That needs tremendous strength and Dhruv will learn to appreciate that in the future.

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  10. Traci York says:

    Anamika, this is a wonderful and powerful reminder not to give into the fear we create in our lives. I have a similar reaction when I see my children (two of whom are now technically adults, since my “babies” are 21, 18, and 16 years old) in a potentially dangerous situation – my imagination gets the best of me. Thank you for such an open and honest post – I needed that gentle nudge to help me focus on resolution, not the fear itself. *hugs*

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Lata Sunil says:

    So true.. let the child make his own mistakes and learn from it. We will not be always there all the time. Of course, you have to make the child aware of the hazards he will face. Good realisation on your part. Happy Holidays.

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