Fear of Heights

I am terrified of heights. Like, start hyperventilating, totally frozen with fear on the second step of a ladder terrified of heights.

It’s the strangest thing really, because there is no rhyme or reason to it. It’s not like I fell out of a high tree or even off of a ladder or anything as a child. It has just always been there. I tried for a while to desensitize myself to the fear by purposely choosing activities like rock climbing. I went with a large group of friends that I trusted implicitly, all very accomplished rock climbers. I was calm through the putting on of the harness, and calm even through one of them free climbing up to show me a good route. But when my hands, and then my feet, actually touched that rock and were no longer touching the ground, I completely freaked out. I think I made it about 15 feet off the ground before I just couldn’t handle it anymore. I burst into loud, wracking sobs the minute my feet were back safely on the ground.

That was the last time that I tried to just “get over it.”

It’s always been a strange thing to me that I have such a tremendous fear of something that has no source. It’s usually pretty easy for me to diagnose where such things come from and then to either just accept them or take necessary action to change them.

But I’ve not ever been able to do that with my fear of heights. And then it expanded itself to include an equally debilitating fear of bridges. Which has even less basis. It’s all very frustrating really.

Being a native Coloradoan I’ve always wanted to get into the outdoorsy stuff – the rock climbing, mountain climbing, snowboarding, etc. But it’s hard to do right by my birthplace when I can’t even drive up mountain passes without panicking and the thought of being in a ski lift makes me want to run away screaming.

I guess maybe I’m just not accustomed to accepting my limitations. I’m usually a push through it, figure out a way around it kinda gal. But there’s a first for everything.

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