I have already talked, at length, about my numerous fears. Fear is a pretty big thing. It’s hard to put a finger on some of the things I’m afraid of, and even harder to explain why I’m afraid of them. Why have eyes given me the creeps since I was a tender young thing watching Milo and Otis? I couldn’t tell you, only that seeing eyes in the dark is right up there with moths and failure in my top fears. And why do I fear failure so much? I mean, I could probably hazard a few dozen guesses, but we’re getting into far more personal territory than what I’m willing to share on a blog.
Fear is interesting. It’s telling. There’s a lot to unpack from each individual fear, ranging from my dislike for moths to my inability to throw up. There’s information contained in each fear, like footnotes on footnotes, leading down to something deeper and scarier still.
Anyway, here’s a drabble.
(Noun) From Ancient Greek παντ- for ‘all’ + -φοβία for ‘fear’
The fear of everything, or, colloquially, a condition of vague and persistent dread.
There’s no question about which college Jessica will attend, which sorority she’ll pledge to. Everybody in her family joins Beta Chi Nu. Her grandmother all the way down to her older sister. She hasn’t seen her in two years.
Her mother speaks of her time in the sorority with fear in her eyes. “You’ll love it,” she says, voice trembling. “It was the most rewarding experience of my life.”
When she looks at photos from her mother’s college days, she sees fifty women, nails bitten, eyes wide and frightened. But she goes anyway, because there is nothing else for her.