This is a tough one for me, because what exactly designates a fear as "legitimate"? So I'm just going to list three of my fears and let you decide.
1. Throwing up.I am not even kidding. Make fun of me all you want. Anyone who knows me knows I avoid sick people like the plague (pun intended). I always have. Thankfully, I've been blessed with a pretty beast immune system. I am very rarely sick, and if I am it's never worse than a cold (with the exception of that sinus infection last fall). Once, my 3-year-old foster sister got the stomach flu, and it slowly ate its way through every person in our household...except me. I don't know why I didn't get it, but I was incredibly grateful I didn't. (God really understands these things...things that might be small and maybe even silly in the grand scheme of things but that are excruciatingly big deals to us individually. It's amazing to me that He cares about things like that.)
2. Being assaulted and/or raped.I read The Lovely Bones in complete terror. Riveted, but horrified. And then I read the same author's memoir, Lucky, about how she was brutally beaten and raped as an 18-year-old college freshman and the journey to bring the rapist to justice. I saw Sleeping with the Enemy on TV once and it terrified me. The thought that someone so close to you, someone you once trusted, could turn out to be so abusive, cold, and manipulative, chills me to the bone. Men like that, men who take advantage of those weaker than them, pedophiles, rapists, and abusers, they deserve to have their balls cut off. But first kicked in the groin repeatedly. They are so disgusting to me.
3. Giving birth.I know it's supposed to be beautiful and otherworldly and everything, but let's be real: It hurts like the dickens, it takes forever, it's bloody, it's slimy, it's messy, I'm sure it's smelly, and sometimes you poop during the process, right in front of an audience. I agree that what the female human body is capable of is completely amazing and beautiful, but what it actually looks like is pretty gross. I know I've never done it before, but that's the point and that's mainly why it scares me. See, folks, I've never been in the hospital for anything. I've never broken a bone, never gotten stitches, never had surgery, I haven't even had my wisdom teeth removed. The closest experience I have to hospitalization is getting shot up with Novocain to get some cavities filled. So yeah, I'm not terribly excited to experience that aspect of motherhood.
I hope you enjoyed this week's glimpse into Heidi's psyche, tune in next time for the ten things I would tell my 16-year-old self if I were a time-traveler.