Of Fear and Rising Above.

Tornados, massive earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions, mass animal deaths, giant holes popping out of nowhere, political unrest — with all these references marking the “end of the world” phenomenon, should we be afraid? What if these are the final days of our lives?

Recent happenings in the world prompted me to think about how I should live my life this year if this was indeed the last year of everyone’s lives. The end of the world is an issue worth taking seriously and at the middle of this thought I found myself imagining a scenario a la ‘Day After Tomorrow’ or ‘2012’ in which I’d probably be in the middle of work when the ground beneath me suddenly shakes violently and all hell breaks loose. And all I could think about was what if I was not with my family and I’m not able to protect and save them, what if I died right then and there and that was it. I felt a certain fear and uncontrollable helplessness as I imagined my life ending and this comes from a girl who doesn’t really fear death. I just fear that I’m gonna miss out on a chance to live my life beyond my 22 years of existence in this world. I was feeling and thinking all sorts of depressing thoughts and then I felt stupid. I realized that I do have a chance to live my life beyond the ‘deadline’ imposed by the Aztecs and Mayans (or whoever came up with the 2012 stuff).

Fear is a powerful thing to feel. It paralyzes a person to the core and not just physically. It creates a feeling of immobility and hopelessness and we as mere human beings, find it very very hard to compete with that. Well I hate that feeling. I’ve always hated the concept of being a damsel in distress. And I truly believe that everyone (most especially women) should and need to grow some balls to survive in this world. Life should not and will not stop with fear. We should not stop planning our future, looking forward to greater things we can achieve just because of looming signs of the end of the world. It takes less than a minute to be enveloped by intense fear but it can also take a second to decide to rise above that fear and just live. And I decided to to do just that.

“There is meaning to our pain if we rise above it.” There’s fulfillment and meaning in our experiences no matter how tragic or sad it is IF we learn to rise above it and move forward. The world is becoming scarier and scarier to live in each day but we can’t just stop with fear. It’s never about how much the threats are nor how it affects us, it should always be how we should let it affect us and what we can do about it. And this goes for all the things we encounter every single day—petty fights with parents, stress from the bosses, pressure from the society, etc. It is up to us and our faith that everything will always turn out for the better.

And for the sake of mentioning it, this weekend was really a Disney moment set in real life: a royal wedding, most-loved pope was beatified and the bad guy died. There will always be negative repercussions to all these events, but in this moment, I just truly want to be happy for the simple thought that life can still surprise you even with the some things you deemed impossible to happen in real life. For me, it’s a simple sign that we can still hope.

Grow some balls, rise above and move forward.

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