It crawls behind your eyelids, scratching through your intestines like a spider created of ice. It lies within the darkness unknown, the screams unheard, the menacing beasts inside every mind waiting to pounce the moment your guard is lowered. Cower before it, or face it down.
It comes upon us all, creeping up through the pits of our stomachs during times we want it least, causing our hands to tremble and making the simplest task impossible. Tears yearn to be shed at the mere thought of it and feet try to flee at its faintest whisper. It is the beast in your soul, the monster awaiting, ready to take over your mind with an inferno of panic, rendering you a terrorized victim in its wake.
Walk a beam a foot-wide which sits upon the sidewalk; this task is effortless. Walk the same beam suspended half a mile in the sky and terror overcomes you, making you unable to place one foot in front of the other, dropping you to all fours to crawl like a baby. The task is the same but the power of fear makes it impossible. A tennis ball tossed to you in the bright sunlight from a friend can be caught with ease, but if a man held a gun to the head of the one you cared for most in the world and said that to drop the ball would mean he pulls the trigger and the ball becomes a grain of sand whipped at you within a tornado. The same sunlight which brought you joy would blind you and your hands become lumps of clay, the insurmountable task of such a simple action rendering you incompetent in the wake of the tsunami of panic caused by what might happen should you fail.
But there is hope.
Fear makes fools of us all, and yet it protects us from harm, warning when danger is close and aiding our reflexes with power we cannot usually touch. It all comes down to how it affects you. If you allow fear to rage through you without control, it becomes an unleashed beast, snarling and snapping, which will turn and tear at you. But if you control it, force the creature to be your tool and not your master, it aids you beyond what you might normally hope to achieve, and the snarling beast becomes a burning phoenix within you, aflame but answering your command.
And then you will truly be free.
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