I keep having this dream that something bad happens to Gabe’s head. His soft spot is my biggest fear about him, it is like a chink in his armor, his Achilles heal. I have dreams about head wounds, about brain damage, about something that would hurt who he is forever and ever and ever; something I couldn’t fix. My bad dreams now are always the same thing. Over and over and over again.
Sometimes Gabe’s soft spot is more pronounced. Sometimes it pulses. Sometimes it looks like a startling indent on the top of his head. I am always aware of it.
A few weeks ago at work some of my coworkers were talking about our biggest fears. One lady said her biggest fear was to be skinned alive. Skinned alive? Yes, she said. Like an apple… just imagine it. I have to say, that – I’m not too concerned with.
My biggest fear, my biggest one of all, bigger than all the rest, is that we get to a point where we have hurt the planet beyond beyond beyond repair. Not just that. That we have hurt the planet and have to suffer the consequences end-of-the-world-style and I have Gabe. It’s not just me, but now my children. And not only do I have to protect them, I have to know that the world they will inherit will be broken and terrible and poisonous. That is what I fear most.
Sometimes I feel like I carry around a big burden. I carry around the knowledge of all the bad stuff that will eventually touch Gabe. His inevitable heart break. The pain of falling down, the ache of loneliness. All the stuff he will have to go through, his failures. There will be good stuff too, but I look at him now and he smiles and laughs and throws little tantrums when I don’t give him the spoon or when the toy falls on the ground – and he is so innocent and trusting. It breaks me on the inside to know all the things I know.
What are your biggest fears? (Growing up my biggest fear used to be failing. I’m over that one… but for years and years and years into my adulthood failure was this big icy cliff looming somewhere unseen.) Have your fears changed? Do they mean anything?