Why I always look ahead and face my fears

rafting in Bulgaria

I have a tiny scar on my left eyelid. It happened when I went rafting for the first time. I’m really afraid of deep water and rafting was a huge challenge for me but despite my fear I wanted to give it a try.

On this day I was terrified. My biggest fear was falling into the fast moving water. I can swim and I was wearing a life jacket but my fear of water isn’t rational, like most fears people have I suppose. The first ten minutes of the journey were calm and peaceful and I did begin to enjoy the experience however when the water started to get rough I started to panic.

We’d been given instructions to look ahead at all times and to lean back when we were close to the branches of the trees that were on the river bank. I’d been doing that just fine up until I saw the waves, at that point the fear took over and all I could look at was the water. I was rowing as fast as I could and was so afraid of falling in that I was only looking down at the waves and not ahead as instructed.

Suddenly I felt something hit me hard in the face … it was a branch. I’d stopped looking forward and I wasn’t prepared for the trees that we were approaching. The branch had hit me just above my eye leaving a bruise and a small cut. It was nothing major and other than the tiny scar there was no lasting damage but it’s taught me a very valuable lesson … never let my fears stop me from looking forward. If I’d looked ahead as I was told I would have seen the tree and avoided it, but my fear and panic made me look down at the water and as a result I was hit in the face!

I’m very grateful for this little scar I have and the lesson it’s taught me. Every day when I look in the mirror it acts as a reminder. I will keep looking ahead now, no matter how afraid I am of what’s coming because if I’m looking ahead I will always be prepared.



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