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 the blank page stares at me, beckoning, challenging me to fill its space. to express the thoughts and ideas and rants stirring deep within. the flashing cursor dares me, taunting me to be courageous and share what's inside.

but until today, something has stopped me. silenced me. almost. every. time.

fear.

fear has been my companion for quite a while. i don't know if it took root as a child, the unsettledness of multiple moves, growing in strength as i became a young single mom, carrying the burden of another human's life fully dependent on me, alone and uncertain.

perhaps fear's roots crept deeper as i watched the man i loved succumb to a devastating stroke, forever altering the course of our marriage, our family, our lives. or maybe its grasp clutched tight as i stood on our driveway one cool march morning and watched fire destroy our home, snatching away the life of our littlest, gaining in strength through the years that followed her death, as life unraveled into heartbreak, sorrow, and seemingly irreparable brokenness. shame. failure. emptiness. all unwelcomed companions of fear, well equipped to silence any voice.