When was the last time you were scared?

I never scare easily. I purposely watch scary movies hoping to be scared or at least uncomfortable and instead I end up laughing at the blatant prosthetics or bad acting. I grew up watching the storyteller (Jim Hendson company production from the late 1980’s) and I remember one story about Fearnot – a young boy who could not be scared so he sets off on a quest to be scared. All of his adventures lead him into scary situations like being mugged or a night in an abandoned castle etcetera but he does not scare or fear, until he meets a young girl and falls in love and when she is in peril he is scared. He becomes overwhelmed by gratitude for finally experiencing fear.

I have believed for a long time that I live my life in fear – many things I chose not to do out of fear. But this is a different kind of fear, not being scared. I am determined to one day live life without fear and rise to the challenge set by Baz Lurhman “A life lived in fear is a life half lived” – I will life a whole life.

But when was the last time I was scared?

Easy, one morning in November 2015 I got up like I do any other working day, I went through my routine of getting dressed and brushing my teeth; I went back to my bedroom to get Meg out of bed and downstairs for her walk when I found her laying on her back, giving me one of those classic Stafford grins. When I looked down I saw a lump around her remaining lower fang and I was pierced by fear.  Pure distressing fear that I ran to the window and the light switch to fill the room with as much light as possible, pleaded with her to let me look inside her mouth. I bent over her and looked closer, confirming there was indeed a lump around her tooth. Devastation flooded every one of my senses. I had to sit down to compose myself. I took her to my parents, getting to work on time became irrelevant to think about. My mum agreed the lump did look familiar and I had to leave. I had to force myself to walk away from Meg, leaving her with my Mum to take her to the vet.

The entire day I felt sick with fear. It got worse when Mum rang to say Meg had been admitted for an operation, the vet agreed that removing the lump immediately and entirely rather than a biopsy was the best chance to limit any possibility that cancer had returned.

A week sluggishly rolled by when finally a phone call arrived, piercing my fear in two, “the lump was benign, it is not the return of cancer and she can keep her remaining lower jaw”.  Thank the stars!  I breathed a very big, deep sigh and thanked every possible deity for their protection and support. Meg was going to be ok.

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