Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Blog Challenge - Day 10

This is always a topic of conversation for me that has everyone else in fits of laughter once the story is told.  Sure, I am afraid of many things that are of the ordinary - such as losing my job, losing loved ones, seeing ones I love suffer, heights, creepy crawleys - the works.  But no, my biggest fear stemmed from a childhood trauma story (that really isn't all that traumatic - it just seems like such to me personally).  No, my biggest fear in the world is...

Yes, you read that right - my horrible fear is of balloons.  When I was young, at my 4th birthday party to be exact, it was a rather warm October day in Southern California.  My parents had planned an outdoor park birthday where all my little preschool friends would join me for a day of games in the grass.  My mother had this brilliant idea of playing a game with balloons, where each child would receive one balloon and try to take it from one side of the grass in the park to the other, where all the parents were waiting to cheer us on.  My mom had blown the balloons up with helium earlier in the day mind you, and it was now mid-afternoon where the heat was at its peak.  My mom lined us up at the edge of the grass, handed each of us a balloon, and once she removed herself from our path, shouted "Go!".  Off went 15 or so little four year olds, toddling down the grass towards the finish line of parents shouting and whooping at the other end.  Then there was the first "POP!" from my left, as one child's balloon exploded in his hands on his face down the field.  My mom ran up to him and handed him another balloon so he could keep on his way, and off he went, new balloon in hand.  Then suddenly, another balloon went "POP!" from the back, and I looked on as my mom rushed over to that child and handed her another balloon to continue the game.  

Then all hell broke loose...

It was as if there were ghosts with sewing pins standing next to each child as suddenly, one by one, all at once, the balloons started popping in each child's hands.


One after the other, over and over again.  My mom was rushing around handing balloons to each child as their balloon popped.  Soon, children were running away screaming, telling my mom "No more balloon! No more!"  None of us ever made it to the finish line with a balloon.  It was pandemonium, and to this day, every time I am near a balloon, my body tenses up and I get so anxious that I sometimes have to remove myself.  I've gotten better over the years, but my friends have constantly made fun of me, including stuffing my locker FULL of balloons on my 18th birthday (in which I still have never forgiven them).  

Bring on the heights, bring on the spiders - but keep the balloons the hell away from me!

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