by Alexis Marie
I know we’ve never met but I feel compelled to ask—do you know what we as humans are? We live and we die. We fight and we prevail. We run and we hide. Life—courage, fear and purpose. The sensations are all humane. It is not, however, that simple of a conclusion or that mundane of an explanation.
Fear—terrible, dreading fear. Fear that snakes up to you and slithers on you. Fear that racks your body and makes you want to tremble while your body sobs. Fear, a painful sensation, it’s a tremor, a distinct glow and movement of your mind that’s dark and disclosed and loud, so that when it wants you to feed it, it lashes out at you, pounding inside your head like a drum: bang, bang, bang, bang! Fear; it is a weakness of the mind and it feels as if you have a mortal enemy inside you, and you can never win against it because of this fact—but could fear ever be a tool to save your own life?
“Run and don’t look back.” We always hear these five words—in movies, in books, in real life…but why are they so important? It’s because, looking back slows you down. When you are running away, that should be your only focus: running to save your life, because when you run to save yourself—desperate actions like that kick in emergency instincts like strength and will, and when you’re running to save yourself, those emergency instincts kick on full force, and you run faster. Looking back…
If you have time to consider anything other than running to save your own skin, then you’re not in that much in a dire situation. Steering your body to go the opposite direction and look back, that’s like repelling against those emergency instincts, and pushing them away, signaling to them that they should ease up on their power and eventually dissipate altogether, Even if this had never been your expectation.
There’s more to it than that—why would you want to look back anyway? The answer is blunt if not mean, and if you become offended I apologize, but: it’s because we are foolish, half-witted, and conceited mortals. We start off running for our lives, but the farther we get away from the scene by which that particular fear had constructed, the more we believe that we are away from danger, or that the threat had been eliminated, so we begin to think, and ruminate about…other things.
“I wonder what’s going on back there…” This is the compelling thought, the thought that makes you stop running away. But it does more than just that, see, this thought makes you curious, because you begin to think about the people and things you possibly left behind—and a new fear is planted inside you. Then what’re you to do, because you might’ve ran from one fear, but you threw yourself on the path of another fear. It’s a complex situation.
Now don’t misunderstand, for some people like to associate running away with cowardice. There’s a difference:
Coward (or cowardice) – “one who lacks courage or shows shameful fear or timidity.”
This is not the same as running away, and although my ‘new-edition-Merriam-Webster-dictionary’ doesn’t exactly have the definition of running away, I can say, without a doubt that the three words, cowardice and running away, are not the same because sometimes when you run away, it doesn’t mean you’re being a coward just…smart.
Like the Wizard said to the Cowardly Lion, that running away from things that scare you isn’t being a coward—it’s just acting safe and smart in some cases…or something along those lines.
Still, if fear means, “an unpleasant, often strong emotion caused by expectation or awareness of danger,” I don’t think running away just to look back is very wise—do you?
Marie Meyers, 2016