The clock shows 1:30 am and the child is still not asleep. All he can do is think about what is out there. His mind races and he is convinced aliens are coming to earth to kill us all. He shivers. He glances at the clock next to his bed and wishes with all his might that the night would be over. He is never scared during the day. Suddenly the pipes start moving water around. He flinches thinking that something is coming.
Some people think that this situation is not common. The truth is that everyone fears something in his or her lifetime. Whether it’s the dark, aliens, thunder and lightning storms, heights, burglars, or anything else; we are all afraid of something. During times like the ones we are facing now, it is common to fear losing your family and friends. Some have the fear of a nuclear war. No matter how strong or brave a person may be everyone has fears.
Even though it seems that there is no way to make the fears go away there are a few possibilities. First, you must realize that there is little to no chance of that actually happening to you. When I was afraid of tornados I did some research and found out that 78% of tornados are F1, which are the weakest tornado. (the strongest are F5). Now I’m not as scared anymore. Do some research and check it out. Just because you’re scared doesn’t mean that you have to run.
Another way to defeat the fear is to talk to someone about it. Talk to your mom, dad, or someone who is close to you. Explain to them that you feel scared or afraid. They may have some advice. When I was afraid of aliens I talked to my grandmother. We talked about it for a while and she helped me realize that it will all be OK.
One of the most important things is to not give in to the fear. If you give in it will start to control your life. You won’t be able to go for a walk, go to the movies, hang out with your friends, or even eat your breakfast because of fear. Your life is the one thing over which you have total control. Don’t lose it to fear.
If none of these things work, you can get some medication that will calm you down. I believe that you should use it as a last resort. Remember there is always help. You can go to your counselor at school, a close friend, your girl or boy friends, or your wife or husband. Don’t be ashamed to talk about this. It will only make things worse if you keep them bottled inside. Now that you know how to fight the fear factor go out and have fun. This time fear won’t stop you.
Contributing and aspiring author, Max Kelman, age 12