Letters of Abstraction: Dear Fear

Dear Fear,

Do you use us as much as we use you?

We mortals often confuse you for your twin. Terror. You and he are not so different, but he is that all-consuming fight or flight reaction when faced with death and pain. But you… you are Fear, not Terror. That nagging whisper in our minds that feeds our doubts with ‘what ifs’ and ‘never enough.’ I think we are not brave enough as a species to face you as a whole, so we break you down into smaller abstractions. Doubt. Paranoia. Weakness. Self-Hate. So many names for the same thing.

Unlike Envy, it seems you have no good side, only the evil that so easily ensnares humanity. But you are not always an enemy. Politicians use you against their people, regular humans like us turn on one another by putting people down to try and shed their own personal fears. Essentially, you are a tool. Is a knife evil? It can cut food or wood…or people, but it is only a tool and is as evil as the people who use it. For better or for worse.

As a singer, you are an old friend. To sing in front of any other conscious being in terrifying. You open yourself up in a way that is almost too personal to share. It isn’t stage fright or anxiety, it’s the nagging whisper of you. Fear. Haunting my thoughts:

“They won’t like this.”

“They won’t like you.”

“You have nothing to offer.”

The point is, we all face you. We all use you.  But hopefully, we learn to stop listening to your little voice in our heads and sing our hearts out.

With love,

-Letters of Abstraction