Location: Kenton Mural, N Denver Ave. and N Willis Blvd. near the Kenton/N Denver Avenue Max Station
I’m Not Afraid Anymore!
One of my favorite movies as a child was Home Alone. If you’re as big of a fan as I am I’m sure you remember the scene where Kevin is yelling,
“…I’m not afraid anymore! I said, I’m not afraid anymore. Do you hear me? I’m not afraid anymore!”
This scene is what God brought to mind after a day of walking downtown Portland and taking the MAX home by myself. Obviously without the screaming as in the movie…but figuratively. The image was beautiful. As I sat on my bed cross legged I boldly declared, “I’m not afraid anymore!”
In 2012, when I was just Peter’s girlfriend, he took me on a date in Portland. We were living in Corvallis and it was a horrific day. I was scared out of my gourds the entire day. Growing up in a town of 1,000 made for quite the culture shock on that date. Since then the thought of being in downtown Portland scared me.
We’ve lived in Portland for nearly a year and I’ve known that I needed to figure something out. I began talking about my fears of downtown Portland with my counselor. She encouraged me to “lean in to the fear”. Not to put myself in danger, clearly, but to boldly keep trying.
Trying was the last thing I wanted to keep doing. But I knew that I had to start somewhere.
A few weeks ago I was scheduled for jury duty at the courthouse in downtown Portland. I was petrified of going downtown by myself. Scared that I’d have a panic attack and not make jury duty and then get in trouble for missing my civic duty…
I knew the only way I was going to make it that morning was if my hubby helped me get there. So I asked him to take the same MAX train with me that morning and help me find the courthouse. Thankfully my husband is a rock star. He got up early, rode the MAX with me, held my hand even, and guided me to where I needed to go.
When we arrived at the courthouse I was on my own. He couldn’t go with me anymore. I had to walk through those doors on my own. And I did it.
I made it. I conquered it. I even wandered around downtown Portland after jury duty all by myself for over an hour before meeting my husband for a lunch date.
He suggested we go to Swank by his office. Typically I’d say “no” quickly because it was a new experience but not this time. Saying yes to that date, was the best “yes” I could have said for our marriage in months. It was much more than a yes to lunch but a yes to not being afraid.
I’m not going to let my fears rule me anymore. I’m going to keep saying yes to adventures. I know who I am again. I am a child of God and I am not afraid.
Yes, fear will still happen, but I’m going to boldly keep leaning into it and conquering those fears.