31 Days of Writing, day 2
Writing prompt: afraid
I grew up in the prime of action movies–Terminator, Rambo, John McClane. The thematic blueprint worked. A lone gun, unflappable, saving the world from overwhelming circumstances. A cruel dictator and his unquestioning mercenary army versus one man, hardened and invincible. The message was clear: true masculinity meant dialing up the fearlessness and turning down the emotion. Most men, regardless of age, routinely heard that emotions–except anger–are unwelcome partners in the fight against injustice.
How could I measure up? I wanted to be brave, but I was afraid. A lot. Afraid of being chased down by a group of older boys (again), fear of being seen as worthless, fear of losing my family. Despite any desire I had and even owning a survival knife, it was clear I would never be John Rambo. I had too many emotions and too many attachments.
Maybe the truth is that taking on an army single-handedly is a piece of cake compared to owning our emotions and our brokenness.
What were the the messages you received about yourself growing up? What were you afraid of?