August 2 16

Whoa. Hold it. We gotta take a boat?

Yes, sir. To get to the other side of the bay.

Nobody said anything about a boat.

Is there a problem, sir?

No, no problem. I’m just not that crazy about boats, that’s all.

Jesus Christ, Kaffee, you’re in the Navy for crying out loud.

Nobody likes her very much.

BOATS.

I’m the only person on earth who goes to Santorini and doesn’t stretch her sea legs. I spent a 3-hour sunset cruise around St. Lucia praying to the sea gods to help me not lose my breakfast. (or lunch or dinner) You could not pay me to go on a cruise. My childhood fantasies about being on The Love Boat were always firmly docked. I have feelings about the boat of Not Penny’s Boat. I consider the castaways on Gilligan’s Island lucky. Watching Danielson practice karate moves on a boat makes me uneasy. Heck, I don’t even like the swans at Canada’s Wonderland.

This gives me panic sweats, which I can imagine was not the intended emotional effect.

Not that crazy about boats. Or, if we’re being honest. Irrationally afraid.

We can add boats to my long lists of irrational fears. Most stem from movies —

Static on the TV means a small, needing-a-hairbrush preteen is going to crawl out of it and leave wet puddles and, well, my life behind. I refuse to say the word Candyman out loud. When I stand in front of a mirror, the reflection will reveal another person behind me. A murderer, obviously. Dark woods are an absolute non-issue for me because, well, Blair Witches, of course. Hanging my ankles over a bed mean that a brought-back-from-the-dead in a Pet Sematary youth will cut my Achilles Heel. And there’s this thing about bugs crawling into my ear. {shudder} 237 is not a hotel room I’m okay sleeping in. When I shower in an empty house, I assume the entire ordeal will end in a Psycho-esque knife stabbing.

Alimartell-psycho

— and boats. (Also I’m irrationally afraid of going bald. And of gefilte fish. And sinkholes. And clowns.)

But!

Here’s the thing.

Yesterday, I spent hours in a canoe.

(and I wasn’t even afraid.)

(and I liked it.)

I was uneasy all the way there. Getting fitted for a proper life jacket was mildly panic inducing, and then there was the orange emergency kit. But then I looked over at my son Josh and I saw it. I could see the same fear and loathing on his face that I was all too familiar with. I had no idea. I was so focused on my own fears that I had no idea that my son had the exact same fears. He didn’t want to go. He just wanted to give in to his irrational fears and watch everyone else enjoy their day.

I forced him to get in the kayak. I forced him to fight those feelings. I forced him to face that fear.

And he did.

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So I did.

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I actually didn’t even have time to think about my fears.

I was too busy being proud of my boy. 

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And of myself too.

I wonder how Josh feels about the shower. 

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  1. AHHHHHHH!!!!!! THIS IS SO AMAZING!!!!!!

    [Reply]

    Comment by Kristabella on August 2, 2016
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