Using my thousandth post the second time around to bare my soul:
Stinging insects. My parents told me I got stung on the eyelid by a bee when I was a little girl. I don’t remember that, but I think that explains a lot of my absolute terror of the little winged beasties. There are a few weeks every year here when the wasps are slowly dying, and get very aggressive - not so much stinging, though they do that too, but crawling over everything, including people, looking for food. Very difficult weeks for me; I spend a lot of time indoors.
Heights. I’m okay as long as I don’t look down. I don’t know when this one started or why. I once had to help my then-three-year-old son across a footbridge over a motorway. The bridge wasn’t very high, maybe five or six meters? But it was made of a mesh sort of steel, so I could see right down to the cars whizzing by under our feet. Flodjunior got frightened of all the noise, and I had to look down at him and encourage him to cross, with my heart pounding the whole way. Fella bilong missus flodnak had gone on ahead and couldn’t hear me calling to him. One of those things I can deal with only because I know it’s my job as a parent, but when the “danger” was over I had a nice little panic attack. (On the way back, after I had told him what happened, the fella carried flodjunior and I closed my eyes and followed the railing.)
Deep water. In fifth grade I went to an afterschool program at the YMCA, led by a sadistic power-happy college student. Once when we had a swim day, he decided that everyone should have to jump off the one meter board at the deep end of the pool. I protested that I couldn’t swim, and he told me I’d learn how very fast. So I obeyed, and thrashed around for what seemed like an eternity before he pulled me out, and then called me a baby for crying. Humiliating, too, because of course all of this happened in full view of the other kids. I told my father about it and that was the last day of the program for my sister and I; Mom and Dad figured it was better for us to come home to an empty house than wait until that bastard killed somebody.
Whoo! Do I have issues or what here…