I am not good with heights, internet.
Me and heights had a breakup over a decade ago (god I’m old) when I fell off a chairlift.
At any rate, since I was six or so, heights and I have not gotten along. Eiffel Tower? Horrifying. Mt. Hood, Oregon? No thanks. Ladders? I’ll pass.
In spite of this anxiety, I went rocking climbing a few weeks ago with my coworkers as part of a team building activity, and it was amazing.
I’ve tried rocking climbing on several different occasions, and none of them ended prettily. I panic when I’m about three feet off the ground. Panic-panicking. Like, almost hyperventilating panicking. I have had a panic attack on a porch.
However, despite breathing like a stranded fish and sweating like a chubby kid in a sauna, I somehow made it to the ceiling.
Here is proof.
That yellow line near the bottom? That’s the ten foot mark.
Goodness, just looking at this photo gives me vertigo.
At any rate, the huge difference was having a group of people at the bottom cheering me on and telling me where to go next, because when you’re fear-clinging to a wall with your sweat-hands 35 feet off the ground, it’s really hard to figure where to put your feet. Mostly because the looking down thing is a huge no-no.
Just goes to show that a second pair of eyes, sometimes, is exactly what you need to get you places you never thought you were going to.
I have a lot of irrational fears. They range the gamut from being a mild annoyance in my life to a crippling terror. One of my New Year’s resolution’s this year was to finally take one off the list. It’s not going well.
I think it’s interesting that fear can shift and change a lot over the course of someone’s life. When I was a little girl, I was pretty positive that at one point I was going to wake up and my bed with have floated out of the house because of a giant flood, so I slept with a bag of “survival supplies” (books, a change of underwear, and a chocolate bar). I do not have any idea where this concept came from, although I did live on a lake in Canada in a haunted house. My best guess is that the story of Noah’s Flood confused me. I was not a quick learner.
At some point my fear of flooding magically went away and was replaced with a ridiculous, all-consuming fear of heights. I fell off a chairlift and ended up dangling off of it for the whole ride up. It was unpleasant. I was maybe 10 years old. I still have a vivid memory of this incident. No bueno. Interestingly, I’ve becoming pretty good at handling chairlifts, but gondolas, tall cliff faces, large buildings, balconies, and poorly made porches are a serious no-go for me. I passed out at the top of the Eiffel tower. It was super embarrassing.
Coupled with my fear of heights is a fear I’can really only conceptualized as “fear-of-imagining-myself-falling-from-the-ceiling”. It’s almost like reverse claustrophobia in that I’m not great with large open spaces, but it’s more like I’m timid around large open spaces within buildings. I remember going into a very large cathedral in France and the space between myself and the roof was mindbogglingly awful. I was perfectly aware that I was on the ground and I wouldn’t even be going up somewhere high, but all that space above me was just the worst thing, for some reason.
Thunderstorms. I hate thunderstorms. I don’t like loud, sudden noises. I don’t know.
Do you have any awful irrational fears, internet?