What Scares You?

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In the Caribbean the ocean water is usually crystal clear, so you can see right down into the sand where you are walking.

I was having a bit of the heebie jeebies from all of the shark sightings and attacks in the US, and I have always wanted prescription goggles so I could go underwater for a peek before I boldly stepped out and started swimming around.

This trip there were jellyfish and seaweed on the ocean side and sea grass in the bay.  I’d swim out just to the edge of the sea grass and go no farther.  There were little kids snorkeling over the sea grass and I figured they would scream and alert me if anything exciting came along.

I saw a school of fish jump into the air.  Always trained that something bigger was probably chasing them, I got right out and stayed alert.

Last year when I got back from my trip my eyeglasses disintegrated in my hand, presumably because I didn’t wash all of the ocean salt out of them.  This year I went in blind. I was sitting on the ocean floor in waist deep water when suddenly SOMETHING brushed across my leg.  It felt like it must be at least a couple of feet long and I freaked.

New discovery: I do NOT like the feeling of fish swimming up against me.  I guess my snorkeling career is over before it began.

I hadn’t seen anything in the water and I had to stick my face right into it to see what was in there with me.  It was a lot of tiny, almost transparent fish, with yellow stripes.  They were maybe two or three inches long.  En mass they felt like something much bigger.  A monster of the deep, at the very least.

The reports came back in at breakfast that some people had jumped into the ocean naked the night before and had been shocked when they were ripped by jellyfish tendrils.  Really, they jumped into the ocean in the dark.  Naked.  Not that their bathing suits would have helped them, but do they have no sense of personal safety?  Did Jaws teach them nothing?   Did they not read the posted sign Jellyfish Have Been Sighted?

I suppose they were young and just drunk.  Jellyfish won’t kill you.

One day my seven year old decided it would be great fun to push and pull me around in the water.  I was just floating, and he’d pull me by my legs or push my shoulders.  He spent about an hour just doing that, sometimes grounding me in the sand and sometimes realizing that he’d pushed me over the seagrass, from which he would rescue me.  It was adorable and fun.  One of those moments when everything seems right in the universe.

Cawing, Dive Bombing Crows

Back in the United States, I was at lunch with a former colleague who told me that she had a spirit experience that scared her. While walking to the community gym, a crow started cawing at her and diving at her head repeatedly, following her.  On the way out, same thing.  Probably the same crow.

What upset her was not just that a bird seemed to have it out for her, but that it landed on two signs in between attacking her.  One sign said “no trespassing” and the other said “stop.”

She had the sense that the crow itself was a Spirit, and by that she meant, that it was a former person.  It was near the unveiling date for two of her close relatives who had died in a car crash, but she didn’t think it was them.  She had no strong intuitive sense of who exactly it might be.  But Jewish lore and a very strong sense of being basically scared by the (many) interactions she has had with ghosts and other actual manifestations, the crow didn’t touch her but its behavior terrified her.

I think we may manifest our “warnings” in different ways based upon our beliefs.  Ghosts and Spirit visits generally do not scare me.  My system says that all visits are for the purpose of being helpful, or they are just passing through and nothing to worry about.  On the rare occasion when something does send shivers up and down my spine or otherwise hits my system in a negative way, I know for certain that something is up because it is not normal for me.

When I think of a crow, I think of a Trickster and Jokester.  If it were dive bombing my hair I am sure I would have reacted by telling it to get the hell away.  I’d have said, if you have a message for me, just tell me.  No need to get all crazy about it.  I see you.  I acknowledge you.

Some of us are scared by tropical fish and not ghosts; for others it’s the other way around.

Clearing The House

You know what has me scared today?  The mundane clearing out of my house.  I need to clean it, and I need to dive into the closets and start giving and throwing things away.

My entire system was thrown out of whack by my trip away and then returning to daily life, but without my kids and husband.  There is something completely unnatural about being alone when you are married with children.

Sure, it is great to have a break from all of the daily running around and responsibilities.  You can see friends, get to the gym, stay late at work if you need to.  Once home, you get the place to yourself and your time is your own.  You can write, meditate, and talk on the phone all night uninterrupted, if you wish.

When I was away, I would gladly spend half the day doing laundry for my family in the hot box.  The laundry room there is ungodly hot.  You want to grab your clothes from the dryer, stuff them back in the suitcase, and run for your life.  You could lose 5 pounds of sweat in the time it would take to fold one load.

But back here, come the weekend when there is tons of time to take care of chores, I seem to not be able to buckle down to the task.  If my husband were here, I’d be going at it whistling a happy tune.


Yesterday I ran into my ex-husband on Facebook.  I have not seen or heard of him in many, many years.  That got my mind working on old patterns.  There are things that we would rather not repeat in life, and his appearance reminded me of some of them.

When I am with my husband, I feel grounded and safe.  When I am all alone in a different country, I feel very much ill at ease.  Something feels off and vaguely scary.

I’ve learned this last year and change that when challenges come up, I can meet them.  When things go wrong, I can arrange to get the problem solved, most of the time.

I am aware that I am probably going to have to move soon.  This house has twenty years of accumulated “stuff” from our marriage.  It is a little dicey how I will relocate and be able to keep my kids in their schools.

This house is too much responsibility for me, in the sense that I don’t have the skills or knowledge to maintain it without my husband.  It is falling into disrepair around me, and my husband can’t make time to come back and take care of it all.  It is also expensive, and it is his dream.

The giant garage is sitting silently with what’s left of his tools.  The rest were shipped to the Caribbean long ago, along with the tractor.  The five acres don’t have a truck or van or work trailers anymore.  There are no deliveries.  No contractors coming and going.

It is nearly empty, except for the debris of things built long ago to be used, which are no longer needed by the man who does not live here anymore.

I am here, though.  I’ve finally realized that even if my husband came home to live, we couldn’t afford to stay here.  So in essence that part of our life is over, yet I remain.  That’s not happy or comfortable.  What I thought would be a two year job turned into something completely different, and that scares me.

What scares you?

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  1. Mary Stephenson says:

    HI Julie

    Probably my big question to you is when are you going to pack up and move to the Caribbean? I know what you are writing but I think between the lines I feel your heart is with your husband. I have never believed the saying that “absence makes the heart grow fonder”. Being apart, you drift apart.

    So to your question. I think not being on the “same page” as my husband. It causes for great conflict and once we get past the issues and it usually takes some venting to accomplish it. Things usually calm down and we can move forward. Our move was scary, with selling the house and trying to find a rental. We are trying to make it home, but still in his mind we needed to buy another place. I personally don’t want to just settle for anything, I would rather wait and get what we really want. Went to check out and see what we can get and the reality has now got us back on the same page. Peace and calmness has come back to rest. Besides my cat is happy here. Life is too short to not be happy. Was so tired of the stress of the big city where we left, the country is so peaceful. Not being in debt up to our eyeballs is a definite plus and helps to keep one grounded and thinking straight as to what really is important.

    Trust you will follow your heart. Wishing you much happiness.


    • Hi Mary,

      My heart is definitely, without a doubt, with my husband.

      It is so hard not to be on the same page, and I know how scary that move was for you. I am glad to hear that the two of you are coming to terms now. And that the cat is happy 🙂

      Thank you, I will take the happiness and will do as much heart-following as circumstances allow!

  2. Julie, I am always taken aback by how we seem to be dealing with similar issues at the same time.
    There was a long period of my feeling like many things were hanging in limbo indefinitely, and then some came to a dead stop completely. At the same time, to my puzzlement, the year 1985 keeps coming to my consciousness, via several references not only on the outside but also in. Some are saying that it’s because of Saturn retrograde, and that whatever we were dealing with 30 years ago is going to be completed now (sorry–I can’t remember it verbatim, but that’s the gist of it.) I didn’t really pay a lot of attention to it until these references were all but hitting me in the face. And before it had even started, I got a strong message from Spirit: “The past is the key to the future.” I couldn’t have heard it more clearly if someone had shouted it in my ear. Never quite knew how it related until more recently. People and issues from that time seem to be coming around again, and these I haven’t seen or dealt with since about 30 years ago, so it’s strange. I tend to like to leave the past in the past, but apparently, something has remained unresolved.
    I can’t pinpoint the catalyst for the change, but the problems with our truck biting the dust, my getting gainfully employed, and several other things seems to have been set back in motion after a too-long hiatus. Finally moving forward again is welcome, but the changes are scary. It means I have to let go of a lot, much of which I didn’t realize I was holding on so tightly. But that stuff was keeping me stifled, big time.
    Obviously your issues are on a much bigger scale. It’s not like you’re moving down the street. The possibility that a major life change is on the horizon is frightening indeed.
    I’ve no doubt that your family is your haven, and so very much more. When mine went visiting relatives for a little while this summer–although I’ve all but begged for that little break–when they were gone, I was lost, and I didn’t know what to do with myself. Couldn’t get motivated to do all those projects I was chomping at the bit to complete. What’s the old saying? “Water, water, everywhere, and nor a drop to drink”… it’s that way with time, too, I found out.
    The important thing is your family being together–however, wherever. The rest will fall into place, but you can’t replicate that peace in your spirit any other way. Some do say that absence makes the heart grow fonder, but I think that ought not be such a general statement. It depends on the individuals and the situation. How can you grow together when you’re apart? Too often people learn to cope and live and keep going with new habits that don’t include those they love, and it’s a small tear that only grows wider with time.
    Be open to the adventure, and remember that it is only a part of the big journey–living that close to sharks, for instance, won’t be forever. Time is too fleeting to fritter it away without the ones you want to spend it with. Something is on the verge that will make the process of getting from Point A to Point B a lot easier and more clear to you. And I wish you all the best along the way.

    • Ayla, Thank you for the good wishes 🙂 How can you grow together when you are apart – that is the question on the table.

      Funny that I was directed to several boxes of memories this weekend that I had no idea were even sill in existence. I pulled a small box stuffed with cards and letters that dated all the way back to the early 80s, like somewhere along the way when I was throwing stuff out I decided to keep at least one note from everyone who was ever important to me. Then my Dad found a box of things my Mom had saved for me, that date back to when I was a baby. 1985 is the year I graduated from high school. I found a journal from when I first met my husband. There were so many things there that I remembered wrong. If you had asked me I would have said those things never happened or didn’t happen that way, but for some reason it was brought to my attention now to remember them correctly, as I perceived them at the time.

      Life is nothing but interesting!

      • Keeping cards and letters in a big box indefinitely: Guilty here! Hey, did you keep notes from friends too? For whatever reason I saved a box of those also. It’s fun to read some of them about every 10 years and laugh my butt off at how some things seemed so important then, and how other things–I can’t even remember what they were about. Admittedly I’m a little sad that our kids’ generation might not ever know the fun (and the risk) of passing notes in class, nor the elaborate way we used to fold them… ! 😀 Cool that you found the old journal. When hubby and I first met I wrote down everything, but after our 3rd daughter was born, it got hard to keep track of it all, especially the Tooth Fairy dates.

        Although I said the past should stay there, it is fun and I think beneficial to keep some of the mementos and the journals. It helps bring us home when we stray too far out with worry about things that haven’t happened yet, and can serve to remind us that if we survived all that, surely we’ll make it through what is to come, too.

        • You know what, I am so tired of “making it through!” It seems like we have gone from one problem to the next, without much of a fun break in between, for many years. Reading the past shows you how you worried about things so much, and yet as you say, they all worked out in the end. They always do I guess, until they don’t 🙂

          Yes, the box was mostly full of old letters from friends, notes passed in class from junior high to grad school, a couple of cards from my mom, and even some from my husband back before we had kids and more or less stopped doing romantic gestures like choosing cards for each other. I did have an entire collection of comic strips that a junior high classmate wrote every day, where each friend was a fuzzy character, and YES they were folded cool 🙂

          • I have a confession to make. I’m really quite tired of it too. It’s been the norm for us as long as I can remember. Sometimes I was scared we wouldn’t even do that, but by some miracle, we did. I’m glad we’re surviving, but I’d rather be thriving. I wonder how much we have to be willing to let go of in order to do that. It is the scariest part.

  3. Welp…. anything brushing up against my legs in the ocean scares the heck outta me too! I only get my my feet wet, or if I’m feeling brave I’ll go to about 3 inches below my knees because it just plain freaks me out lol (that includes lake water too), not to mention there have been a lot of shark sitings and bitings in the NC and SC beaches. What scares me the most though is that I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to do the things I would like to do before this lifetime is over…only time will tell…. Oh, and the fact that my 16 is driving and my 22 year old has moved a couple hours away……. A mother tries not to worry, but, …. yeah, that’s a tough one!
    Interesting about the crow story, there are lots around here and I do see them quite frequently, but there’s been a few times I felt I was being told something… and I wasn’t sure what it was. One being on my way to work a crow flew right in front of my car and landed in the middle of the road… he just stood there for a few seconds, looked at me, and flew off…..and there was no roadkill there that he was after either. Though somewhere I read that some (not all) Native American tribes considered the crow to be a good sign, and a sign of wisdom. 🙂

    • Lorin, I wonder if we even know what is possible for us, this lifetime. We like to think we do, but then everything changes and other things of interest appear on our path. I guess I rely on the old saying “what is for you won’t go past you.” Then I hope for the best!

  4. *16 year old

  5. Move to the Caribbean! As The Lady Chablis (Midnight in The Garden of Good and Evil’ would say ‘Two tears in a bucket,. F**K IT!’
    Also agreed on the spirit visits. Comforting and often passing through, only stipulation is do not move our stuff around/make noise when we’re trying to sleep and we’re good!

    Ran into the ex on FB., yuck. Pretty sure venus is in retrograde now (or imminently?) should explain that one. Good luck on the house purge..

    • Ah, unfortunately I am not invited to move there. Not an option.

      I like my ex, he is a good guy.

      Venus went into retrograde on Saturday, I believe. Big relationship stuff.

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