Sunday, October 26, 2014

Day 26: Stepping Out of My Comfort Zone-Breaking the Fear Cycle

"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
Philippians 4:13

DAY 26:  Fear of Stepping Out of My Comfort Zone

I locked my mom out of the car almost every day.  I did not want to go to school.  I hated it.  Why would I want to leave the comfort of my own home?  Why would I want to leave my mommy?  It was a daily struggle. 
Me and My brother on my first day of Kindergarten

I cried.  My mom got really upset at me.  When she got out of the car and walked around to the passenger side to get me out, that's when I did it...I locked the door.  She was standing outside of the school in her bathrobe and, in my memory, with curlers in her hair with a look on her face like I've never seen before.  She was knocking on the window trying not to make a scene.  I'm sure she was embarrassed.  I know I would have been. 

I don't know how she finally got me to open the door...I'm sure she must have threatened my very existence.    

Day after day our mornings were like this.  I dreaded it.  My mom dreaded it.  Eventually she talked me into getting out of the car by promising me that she would walk me into my classroom.  Then once she got me into the classroom, I didn't want her to leave.  I would scream, cry and hold on to her leg.  I can't imagine how difficult and frustrating this must have been for my mom.

One time, she walked me into the classroom, and I sat down at my desk.  She walked out.  I immediately got up to chase her and all of my classmates grabbed onto me trying to keep me in the classroom.  They didn't know who they were up against.  My brother had me trained quite well as a football player and I busted right through that defensive line! 

After I pushed and shoved all of my classmates out of my way, I chased my mom down the hallway screaming and crying.  She calmly turned around and bent down and gave me a hug.  That's all I needed.  Ahhh...Comfort. 

Me and My brother on the first day of first grade where the fear really kicked in!

Once I turned around and took steps away from the comfort of my mom and being home with her, I felt a lump in my throat and I wanted to turn around again and go after her...Fear! 

But I broke through that fear and kept walking.  I walked into my classroom that day on my own and after that, I didn't have any trouble going to school again.  Going to school became comfortable to me, and I actually started to enjoy myself.  Ahh...Comfort. 

But come second grade, I learned that school was one challenge to step out of my comfort zone after another.  Being a student didn't mean just sitting in class and learning.  It was also about participating and having to talk out loud and even worse--read out loud...Fear! 

I despised the round robin reading (for those who didn't experience that, it was a dreaded way of reading through a chapter in a book as a class.  The teachers would have us go up and down the rows taking turns reading aloud.  Except I was too busy trying to calculate which paragraph that I was going to be stuck reading that I didn't even pay any attention to what was being read.)  I was filled with fear and anxiety the closer it came to my turn to read aloud.  Did I know every word?  Was I going to mess up?  Should I just run out of the classroom?  It was agony reading aloud in class but I did it.  And soon reading aloud became comfortable.  Ahhh....Comfort.   

Then came 5th class!  I actually loved music class, and I loved singing with my classmates until my music teacher, Mrs. Westcott, thought it would be a great idea to have each student sing a solo in front of the class.  WHAT?  Fear, fear, and more fear! 

The thought of singing in front of the whole class...well...that just wasn't going to happen.  When it came to my turn, I froze.  I couldn't do it.  Nothing would come out of my mouth.  I just stared at her. 

Mrs. Westcott was so patient with me.  She just went on to the next student and then came back to me to give me another chance.  I still couldn't do it.  Seriously, nothing would come out.  I was frozen with fear.  She just went on to the next student and came back to me again.  This time, I got the tiniest little bit of my voice to work.  I remember my classmates leaning close to me straining to hear me.  Someone even said, "We can't hear you!"  I just kept singing in my teeny, tiny, almost inaudible little voice as quiet as I could.  But I did it.  To me, though my voice was small, the victory was big!

Soon, I began to become more and more comfortable singing aloud in class and I even sang a little solo at our end of the year concert not just in front of my classmates, but in front of all the parents too.  Comfort...fear...comfort...fear.
Yes, that's me with the crazy, curly hair!

My little solo

Even more unbelievable was once I got to high school, I actually participated in not just one, but two musicals!  I played Patty Simcox in "Grease".

 I also had the opportunity to play Nelly Forbush in "South Pacific".  I even sang solos in front of an entire gym of people. 
Such an amazing cast of ladies!

Such a hilarious cast of guys!
Me...the little girl who was too fearful to get out of the car...too fearful to go to school...too fearful to walk into class...too fearful to read aloud...too fearful to sing out loud...pushed through her fears and stepped out of her comfort zone time and time again.  And because of that, I was able to experience amazing opportunities that I wouldn't have had otherwise and meet some amazing people along the way.   

And now, even today, I still experience the comfort...fear...comfort...fear cycle.  Just when I start to feel comfortable, God pushes me forward into an area of discomfort and fact many times...of fear.  But because I trust God completely, I continue to step out of my comfort zone and push through the fear because of a little, I take that back...because of a big thing...called faith!

Do you need to face your fears of stepping out of your comfort zone?  Do you need to have more faith to do what God is calling you to do even if it scares you?
Today, I give my fears of stepping out of my comfort zone to You.  Father, without You, I can do nothing.  Through You, I can do all things.  Increase my faith to step out to do whatever You are calling me to do.  Give me what I need to follow You courageously.  Every time I find myself holding back, break through whatever is stopping me.  Crush my fears with Your Mighty Hand so I can live life full of amazing experiences and abundant joy!  Lord, shine Your light into my fears of stepping out of my comfort zone and fill me with faith to walk confidently forward following You, trusting You, and singing a song to You!  In Jesus' name.  Amen.

Start from the beginning on this 31 Day Writing Challenge--31 Fears to Conquer Through Faith:


  1. That is so great! I love this post. : )

    1. Thank you! It's great to see those little moments throughout my life where I pushed through the fear! Because there were so many moments when I didn't.