Saturday, October 22, 2011

To Freak or Not to Freak, That is the Question.

Fear based cultures make me giggle, and on a recent flight I was reminded of the fear culture that I live in. Sometimes I forget.

The flight was happy and smooth. Time whizzed by as I read my new book.  Cotton ball clouds dotted the cerulean sky out the window.  

Landing was about 45 minutes out and the loud blaring, pinched nose tone of the captain cut the crisp stale air of the cabin. He said in an urgent voice, "We're going to hit medium to high turbulence in about five minutes. Please prepare!"

The collective pulse and breath of the air passengers quickened. The tension built around me--I could see stress on people's faces--yet I chose another path. I chose calm. I told myself that we would have a smooth flight, and that I would not allow my fear mind to prepare myself for turbulence that was not guaranteed to happen. 

Twenty minutes passed and nothing happened. Forty minutes passed, and still, nothing happened. We landed on the runway without experiencing any turbulence. The smooth flight that I prepared for played out. :-)

This is a microcosmic example of a collective bracing for the worst. But why bother, unless the worst happens? Yeah, it's good to buckle up, on an airplane, or in life. Yes, I tie my shoes so I don't trip when I walk down the street. But please everyone, don't freak out! What do we really need to fear?

(disclaimer-yes, I've been afraid of flying in the past, and a moment like this could have freaked me out too. Somehow, I've been able to get over it. I guess you could say it was a choice :-) 

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