The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear, and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown. – – H. P. Lovecraft –

– Early in my climbing career I was faced with fear…the fear of falling. It was unknown to me as I had never taken a fall or a “whipper” as climbers affectionately coin it. – – As a lead climber we take the rope up with us and clip it through protection as we climb. Thus if we fall, we fall the double the distance we are above the protection. This is the psychological weight, with difficult enough moves, that make gravity nearly unnecessary. –

– I succinctly remember the moment when that fear vanished. I fell on a move I perceived to be beyond my ability. The systems worked as expected. The protection held, my partner arrested the rope, caught me and I was fine. When I tried the move again I found it easy…the fear was gone. I experienced it, got to know it, found trust in the equipment and my training and rendered fear powerless. Allowing me to focus on the task.-

– For me, these lessons transfer directly to everyday life. So, today as I begin leading a Wilderness EMT course I remind myself to not be afraid of falling. My systems, the team around me, work. I know this from experience they have caught me before. And while this isn’t the exact road I’ve been on before it’s familiar enough terrain. –

– Who makes facing fear possible or what perspective do you keep to do more? –

-PC: Brittany Mumma