“I’d spent my life believing that people were, at heart, kind and good. This is what the world had shown me. But I couldn’t find anything good about my captors. If humans could be this monstrous, maybe I’d had everything wrong. If this was the world, I didn’t want to live in it. That was the scariest and most disabling thought of all.”
– Amanda Lindhout, A House in the Sky.
You asked me what I was afraid of
I said I didn’t know
because I was afraid of answering
afraid of feeling my own fear
because I am scared, and that scares me
I’m so scared that everything I hold to be real isn’t true. I’m scared that people aren’t fundamentally good. I’m scared that we have no purpose and no importance. I’m scared that it’s all an illusion created by chemical pathways and it will mean nothing at the end. I’m scared of being alone and having nothing to do, nowhere to go, no one. I’m scared that nothing I do really matters. I’m scared that I’m not special, that nothing I feel is real or unique or important, it’s all just evolution and flawed perception. I’m scared that I’m not good enough. That none of it matters, not even love.
All of my beliefs are made to counteract my fear. I tell myself that these fears aren’t real, that love is, because I think maybe, even if it’s not true, it can help to get me through. Because the only fact of the matter is I’m alive.
So I’ve built up these complex logical systems, optimistic justifications for every doubt I think about
created so many little reasons why we do matter, why good is real, how reality is whatever I choose to believe.
The thing is, if I really believed it, maybe I wouldn’t have to convince myself