I believe/I fear.

Once upon a time, my friend Elizabeth of Scholaristas attended a discussion night of sorts, where everyone stood in two lines. Each person took turns, going to the front of those lines. There they said things they believe, and things that they are scared of. When others agreed, they would move to the opposite side of the room. The imagery is beautiful to me, and was to her as she shared in this solidarity and witnessed that she was neither alone in her fears nor her beliefs. Inspired by my friend, I present my own (partial) lists.

  • I believe in kindness.
  • I believe in Heavenly Mother.
  • I believe in truth.
  • I believe in prayer.
  • I believe in 8 glasses of water a day.
  • I believe in 8 hours of sleep.
  • I believe in fruits and vegetables.
  • I believe in herbal tea.
  • I believe in long baths.
  • I believe in color.
  • I believe in spring.
  • I believe in babies.
  • I believe in moving, biking, running, dancing.
  • I believe in planting gardens.
  • I believe in the power of words.
  • I believe in music.
  • I believe in rituals.
  • I believe in gratitude.
  • I believe in growth.
  • I believe in learning.
  • I believe in equality.
  • I believe that there is nothing that the road cannot heal.
  • I believe that there is no place like home.
  • I believe in happy endings.

  • (Sometimes) I fear that I may be living my life wrong.
  • I fear that I may not be a bright enough philosopher.
  • I fear student loans.
  • I fear that it will take me a long, long time to get a job.
  • I fear decisions.
  • I fear endings.
  • I fear that the amount of love I have for people is not the right amount.
  • I fear past heartbreak which sometimes still aches.
  • I fear timing.
  • I fear divorce.
  • I fear getting pregnant.
  • I fear not getting pregnant. (Or not being able to.)
  • I fear not knowing where I will live next year. (Or even next week.)
  • I fear flying across the world by myself. (Though I have done it two times in the last year.)
  • I fear loved ones’ death.
  • Even more (at this present time) I fear the death of a loved ones’ loved one.

What do you believe?

What do you fear?


Rachel is a PhD student in Philosophy of Religion and Theology at Claremont Graduate University. She co-edited _Mormon Feminism: Essential Writings_ with Joanna Brooks and Hannah Wheelwright. She is also a lover of all things books and bikes.

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10 Responses

  1. Margaret says:

    I fear that I don’t work hard enough
    I fear that I don’t deserve the good things in my life
    I fear that I am a fraud after all
    I fear that everyone will realize I am a fraud
    I fear the dark
    I fear parties
    I fear that I’m not a good enough wife and my husband secretly wishes I were different
    I fear that after years of work, I won’t finish my degree

    I believe that God loves me

    • Rachel says:

      Dear Margaret, I fear parties too. And also that after years of work, I won’t finish my degree. And I believe that same belief. (At least on best days/good days.)

  2. Diane says:

    I fear crowds
    I fear people will hurt me, because they have.
    I fear walking outside my house and getting shot(I live in Philly, after all)
    I fear getting hit by a car. (People don’t stop at stop signs around here. Beau almost got his head smashed in today)

    I believe in the love of a GREAT Dog
    I believe in Great Books that no matter how many times you read them, you can still learn something
    I believe in Diet Coke. The elixir of all life forms.
    I Believe that having one good friend is better than having 100 or 1000 friends
    I believe in the healing powers of a good meal shared with those friends.
    I believe in standing up for myself, even if it makes me unpopular

  3. Deborah says:

    I fear/believe I will not/will be the parent my daughter needs at each stage of her life.

  4. hjisha says:

    I fear I am a fraud
    I am afraid of death
    I believe in my children

  5. CatherineWO says:

    I fear large crowds of people.
    I fear that I am not doing enough to make a difference in the world.
    I fear hospitals.
    I fear that we are destroying the earth so rapidly that there will not be clean air, clean water and beautiful vistas left for my great grandchildren to enjoy.

    I believe in people, that there is a good side to almost everyone.
    I believe in strong women–past, present and future.
    I believe in the energy of love.
    I believe that a bright future is possible because I have seen it in the eyes of my grandchildren.

    • Rachel says:

      Dear CatherineWO, I fear large crowds too, and the part about our environment. I also believe the same belief about strong women. I love meeting them and/or learning about them.

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