Welcome to a Secret Subject Swap. This week 14 brave bloggers picked a secret subject for someone else and were assigned a secret subject to interpret in their own style. Today we are all simultaneously divulging our topics and submitting our posts.
My subject is “ What were you afraid of as a child? Are you still afraid of it now?”. It was submitted by http://angrivatedmom.wordpress.com. Here goes:
From the moment I read this prompt, I knew exactly what I was going to write about. Simple really, until the night before post time and I was thinking about when I was a kid and the light bulb went off. While the first topic is a definite fear (of black dogs). Apparently, when I was only two my mom left me out in the yard while she went to answer the phone (CPS anyone?) When she came back out after just a moment (my momma has never in her life been on the phone for “just a moment”, not even if it’s a wrong number!) later she said I was pinned to the ground by a huge German Sheperd. I don’t remember it, but I am still afraid of black dogs no matter what size they come in.
No, I decided to write about an experience that I had when I was 7 years old that I have never been forgotten and has actually changed the way that I live my life to this day…
It was Jan. 1978 and we were hit with a blizzard. There was a record snowfall of all time in the Cincinnati (northern Kentucky where I was born and raised). We got hit with 31.5″ of snow. We had only been back from Christmas vacation a few days when we were once again sent home for what ended up being 3 weeks.
The last week it had warmed up significantly and we were all tired of being stuck in the house and I’m sure mom was tired of us being stuck in the house. So, when I mentioned going up the road to my friend’s house she was all for it. It was a pretty long walk, especially for a seven-year-old.
Of course, I didn’t think to call her ahead of time I just assumed like me that she would be housebound too! I put on my brand new Christmas coat with its faux fur collar and dark burgundy color and my brand new white carpenter style jeans that were all the rage in 1978.
It was a house almost to the very end of a road that was less than a mile, but not by much. I made to her house and climbed through drifts that were still three and four feet tall to get to the front door where I knocked to no avail. I couldn’t believe they weren’t home so I knocked three or ten more times before finally giving up.
I turned to make my way back home, pants wet from snow drift swimming were starting to sting my legs. So when I spied a path in the woods across the street I thought to myself I could probably get home a lot quicker if I just went through the woods. So I waded through the drifts once more and a few more before I got to the treeline where it was it was not nearly as bad.
I’ve always had a good sense of direction if nowhere else so I turned toward my house and started to make my way through the trees the late afternoon sun going down fast. I was worried about being stuck in the woods after dark because well, I was only 8. I heard all kinds of stories about what happened to little girls stuck in the woods (okay, maybe that came later in life) but I was still afraid.
I saw the opening in the trees ahead so I started to move a little faster already picturing the roaring fire in the living room and some hot chocolate if I asked nicely. I made it out of the clearing and realized it was only a small area that was opened up before the trees began again.
I picked up my pace once again my legs burning and stinging at this point. My pants froze to my leg. I was halfway across the opening when what I thought was the ground beneath me suddenly opened up and I dropped down into the coldest water I had ever felt. Apparently, I had been walking across a frozen pond and the ice had suddenly given way.
I still remember the freezing water. I was scared and my faux fur coat and shoes were weighing me down but I managed to kick my feet and move towards the top. There was only one problem and that was that my small body had made a very small hole so when I made it to the top I couldn’t find the hole that I had fallen through.
I still remember frantically feeling around blindly under the water. I was beyond terrified. I was about out of breath when I spotted the weak sunlight filtering into the hole that I had made. I grabbed onto the edge only to have it crumble in hands. I fought and clawed my way up on the ice and scooted my way towards the bank.
I pulled myself up still in my coat now weighing much more than it had only moments earlier. Stinky, stagnant water running down my face and hair. I started to run, but that had only made me colder so I had to slow back down to walk. My coat was freezing stiff from the cold air and water and my pants were already frozen to my legs.
I made it home that day I’m not sure how, but I’ve never forgotten it and still to this day when I’m really tired or stressed I have nightmares where once again I am stuck under the ice. I have never gone sled riding, skiing, or anything that involves cold and wet since that day and my biggest fear is surprise, surprise drowning.
As an adult, I am astounded that I made it out alive. I must have had a guardian angel on my shoulder that’s all I can say.
Here are links to all the sites now featuring Secret Subject Swap posts. Sit back, grab a cup, and check them all out. See you there:
Baking In A Tornado http://www.BakingInATornado.com
Spatulas on Parade http://spatulasonparade.blogspot.com/
The Lieber Family Blog http://thelieberfamily.com
The Bergham Chronicles http://berghamchronicles.blogspot.com
Bookworm in the Kitchen http://www.bookwormkitchen.com/
Never Ever Give Up Hope http://batteredhope.blogspot.com
Simply Shannon http://shannonbutler.org
Southern Belle Charm http://www.southernbellecharm.com
Not That Sarah Michelle http://notthatsarahmichelle.blogspot.com
A Little Piece of Peace http://little-piece-of-peace.blogspot.com
The Angrivated Mom http://www.angrivatedmom.wordpress.com/
When I Grow Up http://kimberlyyavorski.com/whenigrowup/