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Lance Scranton: It’s scary to face fears

Lance Scranton
Lance Scranton

We celebrated Halloween this week, and I was reminded of a few things that used to scare me while I was growing up that have since become good lessons.

Crutches — don’t ask! I have no idea why I was deathly afraid of crutches, but one day when my dad offered a ride to a stranger on crutches; I thought I would die. The stranded passenger threw the crutches between the front and back seat, and I started screaming.

Later on in life I spent six weeks on crutches after a knee operation, and they became two of my best friends. I learned about the importance of surrounding yourself with people (and things) that will hold you up when you aren’t at your best or healthiest. It’s a great lesson for all of us to know — that there are people in our lives who we can lean on when thing get tough. It’s often used as a negative word in conversation, but the crutches in my life have served to help make me a better person by offering unquestioning support.

Ghosts — I suppose most of us who grew up dressing as ghosts for Halloween remember the scary stories. You know, stories about how they were capable of floating into your bedroom through walls and closed doors. For years white bed sheets would cause me to flip out and freak out. I was forced to dress as a ghost on many trick-or-treat nights, because it was a cheap costume. Also. I could dress really warm under the sheet with just enough visibility to stumble around the neighborhood and collect as much candy as possible.

So often we can become paralyzed with fear because of the things we think might happen. Ghosts (and Casper) taught me that fear resides inside of each of us and can force us to do some pretty crazy things. We all deal with the worries and concerns of life and the world around us. Yet ghosts remind me that most of my worrying is unfounded and serves only to sap my strength and force me into making bad decisions. Experience has taught me that we tend to fear the things that we think we should control but can’t. We need to take a walk and depend on neighbors (and the community) to help you out with some reassurance.

I hope you had a fun celebration, and we should all remember how much we need support from our neighbors and how many of our worries never come to pass. At least that’s what I think about on Halloween.

Lance Scranton is a coach and a teacher at Moffat County High School.Lance Scranton is a coach and a teacher at Moffat County High School.Lance Scranton is a coach and a teacher at Moffat County High School.


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