So once you’re an adult, aren’t you supposed to stop being scared of stupid stuff that probably won’t really happen? Not me. I have some pretty weird, irrational fears that have lingered with me for years and I’m not talking about cancer, death, or random crime. Perhaps it’s a sign of a vivid imagination or maybe just the early stages of some sort of paranoid illness I’m harboring.
1. Driving down the highway and discovering that there is a snake by my feet. Oh. My. Gosh. What would I do? I’m terrified of snakes so I’m not sure that I could continue to operate the car and safely pull off the road. If anything ever rubs up against my leg while I’m driving then this fear is instantly activated.
2. Prison time. I’ve been scared of serving time for just about as long as I can remember. This probably dates back to reading Midnight Express as a teen, which is a horrifying account of an American spending years inside of a Turkish prison. I’m a law-abiding citizen, but accidents happen people!!!! Mistakes are made! Orange is the New Black has made me feel a little bit better about prison, but I still don’t want to go.
3. Falling down and knocking all of my teeth out. This is a relatively new fear, but it pops into my mind every time I trip. I wouldn’t mind getting some new Hollywood-style teeth, but I just think it would really, really hurt.
4. Finding a decapitated head in a toilet. This one is weird and I debated adding it since it makes me look like I might be crazy. Where this image and fear came from I couldn’t say. It pops into my head from time to time, mainly when I have to go into a dark bathroom and the lid is down on the toilet. Let’s hope this fear is never realized.
5. Finding a rat or snake in the toilet. This fear dates back to living in Hawaii when many families believed that rats lived in the sewer systems. Rats were all over the island and grew to be the size of large cats. Some people put cinderblocks on top of their toilets at night in case there were rats trying to come up through the toilets. Others poured lots and lots of bleach down their toilets. As you can imagine, living in Hawaii was an adventure. Trips with the kids to the bathroom at night were spent checking the toilets for decapitated heads, rats and snakes!
6. Finding a dead person sitting on a toilet in a public bathroom. Ok… so perhaps you are now speculating that perhaps I was traumatized at a young age in the restroom since so many of my fears involve toilets. I don’t know…nothing comes to mind. This dead person fear actually stems from watching the movie Nine to Five where Dolly Parton works in a hospital and finds “another stiff in the john.” It’s a pretty funny part of the movie, but it just always stuck with me that this was a possibility.
7. My plane going down. This is a biggie. I hate flying and worry about dropping out of the sky for the entire time I am in the air. Flying just seems so unnatural. The plane is sooo heavy and really just shouldn’t be up in the air. Yes, I know all of the facts about how safe flying is, but that’s why this is an irrational fear, right? My newest coping mechanism is to watch the flight attendants for any signs of visible stress. If they look calm, I am able to maintain my sanity and control my urge to start screaming.
8. Opening a closed shower curtain. You really never know if someone is hiding back there waiting to jump out at you with a knife. Why can’t everyone just remember to leave it open?
9. What if we’re living The Matrix? What if we’re all just in some dreamlike state right now and nothing is real? Right now we could be someone’s version of Sims and not even know it. This bothers me sometimes.
10. The backseat of the car at night. I always check and double check for anyone who might have snuck into my car…even if my car is parked in my locked garage. The thought that someone is back there waiting to hijack me is terrifying.