I watched from the ground, smiling as my son landed safely at the end of the zip line. It was his first time zip-lining and I wasn’t really sure how smoothly it would go for him, or for me. I didn’t join him but I followed his every ‘climb’ throughout the training session, then slowly faded into the background as I saw him get more comfortable. He followed instructions as I encouraged him to stay focused on the task at hand, keeping his hook on the line the whole time.
I heard the kids shouting “clear,” as a sign that it was safe for the next person to come right after. Meanwhile, I sat in the shade and started a conversation with another mom. We enjoyed watching from below, it was the perfect day for zip -lining.
Two hours later as we exchanged stories on our drive back home my son let me know how much fun zip-lining was. He had been tense about the whole idea because the trees were so tall… “You did it! Aren’t you glad to overcome the fear of heights?” I asked. All the while, I was glad that I was able to face my own set of fears about his adventure.
In my book I talk about the importance of becoming aware of our fears so that we can identify the triggers of our stress and anxiety. When we are aware of our feelings and emotions we can be guided as to what the triggers of our anxiety are. It is from a place of knowing and understanding of our own fears, that we can better manage the cause of our anxiety. In my case, I was afraid that something would go wrong but I was able to manage my own fears and not “transfer” my fears to my son.
We must face out fears, small or big, and remind ourselves that we can overcome any challenge that presents itself. My son’s adventurous spirit reminded me so.
Adacelis Pérez is the author of Anxious Mom, Anxious Child: A Mother’s Journey from Anxiety to Serenity.
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