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At the age of two years I was on an aeroplane with my mom and my grandfather. We were travelling to JHB from CT. (God knows why!?) I was with my mom while she was changing my sisters’ nappy in the toilet when the plane dropped. My mom was crushed into the floor of the plane. My sister was raised up into the air with my mom holding on to her one ankle. I am not sure what happened to me but the result is/was a fear of flying!

Now I am an adult and my job requires me to fly all over the country. Every time I get on a plane this fear grips me. Irrational, subjective and ridiculous but never the less very real! I begin to sweat! My heart races! I breathe fast!

The way I used to deal with this was to avoid flying all together. If I was offered work in another city I would give it to one of my colleagues rather than do the flight. I was known to say to my colleagues, “ Hey, you want to go to CT….?”

Am I capable of doing the work in another city? YES! Do I have the potential to do the work in another city? Yes! The fear of the flying makes me creatively avoid the work that I am quiet capable of doing! This is irrational! AND it is still my first knee jerk reaction – how can I get out of this? “Maybe we could drive?”

I cannot honestly say that I remember the details of that flight! My mom does and has told me. I think I remember feet and seeing my grandfathers’ shoes. My mom told me to crawl out of the aircraft toilet and get to my grandfather. Once the door was open she tells me that all the air hostesses were strapped to the floor. I crawled over them and this is where I think I remember feet. Once I recognised my grandfathers shoes in my memory there is relief. I was safe! The flight though was not!

I was left with a residue of irrational fear from childhood that immobilised me and kept me “stuck” in adulthood and caused me to creatively avoid what I am quite capable of doing! I have subsequently overcome this fear (mostly – I face the same panic in some measure still every time I fly!) but it is no longer an immobilising issue It took a conscious effort of over 2 years to achieve it!

Initially I used to fly in an aisle seat and imagine during  whole journey that I was on a bus. The turbulence was just bumps in the road. I could never look out as that would seriously hamper the “truth” as I had created in my mind in order to do it!

I chose very specific inner dialogue and practiced it each day whether flying or not! I would tell my self, “ I remain calm, relaxed and totally at peace while flying knowing that I am in the safest transport known to man!” I would visualise myself in that seat while I was on the ground and see myself achieving the whole flight with all the smells, the feelings and the sense of take off and land…all calm and relaxed! This worked until the French landed in the sea! I then had to change my inner dialogue because it stopped working! It became,“ I remain calm, relaxed and totally at peace knowing that wherever I am in my life everlasting arms are underneath!” This is still working! Hope that God keeps His slate clean and His status because I don’t know where to take my inner dialogue from here! Eternity seems about as far as I can go!

This particular fear is not helped by living with a husband – the same one – who insists on having a television in our bedroom – suffers from insomnia and loves watching air crash disasters loudly in the middle of the night! I wake up to a whole plane screaming in total fear and panic while the plane goes down! AND I am flying in the morning! Maybe he thinks he is doing me a favour and helping me face my fears! I threaten to throw the television out of the window – damn those burglar bars!

The best place in my opinion for all televisions is on the tar outside the house! In irreparable pieces! That is where they should all congregate! Perhaps we should line them all up, end to end and see how far we can get around the world hopping from one to the other without touching the ground! They should only be recalled when I feel like watching a romantic comedy in the hopes that the romance exists out there somewhere…just before that light goes out on that too!

After doing this as a coping mechanism for a good while one day I decided to book a window seat and look out. This transformed my flying behaviour. As I overcame the fear of actually seeing exactly where I was – Hello! In the air! It gave me a reference point and I found that looking at a fixed point on the horizon helped me to stabilise. I prefer to feel the earth beneath my feet than be in an object that has nothing grounded! Like our fears which often have no real grounding! They just are!

  1. Do you have childhood fears that are stopping you from doing something?
  2. What is the fear? Name it…
  3. Is there an identifiable source?
  4. How are you creatively avoiding? What are you creatively avoiding?
  5. What could you do differently that could break this and cause you to operate at your potential level rather than at your belief level?
  6. What inner dialogue is required to break the hold of that fear?

My husband, Lloyd has a Road King Custom Harley Davidson! I have leathers, a couple of jackets, and numerous Harley garments and Boots! I love my Harley boots – they are definitely made for WALKING! I even, on occasion, ride pillion (on the back of the Harley whilst my husband does the actual riding). I insist, however, on the sissy bar being in place. What is a sissy bar you may ask? It is the backrest that is put on the rear seat of the bike when a passenger like “myself” is present. I will not ride without the sissy bar in place! I am a sissy! Sissy bars are for sissy’s!

For me it is very scary to ride on a bike! You see the road go by so very fast and you are not in control at all! In fact far, far, far, from it! (I have control issues!). In the biker world it seems to be all about the biker. There is even a T-shirt that says:  “if you can read this the bitch fell off!”

Do I ride? Not often! Why? I just can’t integrate the image! I tried I really did. I put on those leathers – once or twice… They seem to be shrinking! I even thought they might fit better if I got into water with them on! They say water helps them meld to your body. I got into the swimming pool – that was apparently the wrong thing to do…I was told……because apparently pool chemicals in the water are not good for the leather! Well, at least I tried!

Once I actually got them on only to find that I could not lift my leg high enough to swing it over and get on to the bike! They are like I would imagine wearing a straight jacket is but on your legs so you can’t move! I have tried this “biker chick” thing I really have. I just can’t assimilate the image or integrate a “biker chick” persona! It is NOT me! Sorry! No can do!

I did think that those leathers may look good in a frame on the wall. You know one of those glass-on-glass ones. A tall thin one –  frame that is! Not sure what to do with them? Now that I have tried them on so often….AND they are still shrinking – I am quite attached to them so they hang in my cupboard and I bring them out now and again to show people what I could be! The leathers –they were very expensive you know! They are just not me!

No one is really forcing me to be this biker chick person but I thought I would try because my husband has a Harley-Davidson and it would be so nice to cuddle up behind him on the bike and go for rides. Now you know that when you do get on a bike there is no cuddling. If you put your arms around his waist and lean in your helmet hits against his and it is a bit like head butting very hard things and feeling no pain – not pleasant at all!

I am NOT addicted to the adrenalin of defying death and I do NOT enjoy near death experiences! In those leathers I personally cannot live or move or have MY being! I keep my leathers to remind me that I can only be me!

I can only be true to the image I hold of myself! If I try to be what I am not I feel out of kilter and incongruent! It just does NOT fit! I can only be my true authentic self! Free forever to be me! Yay!


In 2005 my husband sold a Harley Davidson to a woman. At the time she said she would like to meet his wife – me. A few months later we made an arrangement to meet at the Mug and Bean. I was a bit resistant as I did not know why we must meet? It was a humbling experience…… We ate – nothing spectacular – and then I announced that I needed to go and fetch my kids from school. Karon took a cream packet out of her bag and gave me this gift. I was shocked and overwhelmed. I opened the gift to find a string of pearls – beautiful, genuine, shiny, lustrous ….. Karon said she felt God say that she should give me this string of pearls to remind me how precious I was to God! Well I was overwhelmed as the concept of pearl creation has consistently been a fascination to me and pearls have been gems of significance in my life. I had a book in my brain called “ A string of pearls”! The concept has been incubating for about 10 years now! Transformed into “Irritating Pearl Creating.” 

Pearls are born out of the grit and irritants that are added! Bone, metal, mud, wood, pieces of shell – an irritant of this nature is needed to begin the process of forming a pearl. These irritants are in my life and yours! Once the irritant has been added even cultured pearls form unassisted by mankind. The pearl is the secret of the waters – the deep, deep waters. They are each one a miracle, unique, rare and expensive (costly).

 The oyster incubates the irritant and over time creates something beautiful! 

Deep water experiences…requiring life threatening dives into uncharted waters to uncover, retrieve and display as adornment….. Pearls are associated with tears….. time…..wisdom….. Pearls are considered a belief in solid values, beauty, completeness, happiness, truth, perfection, love, wealth, wisdom…pearls are timeless. Pearls are warm organic creations. They thrive on being loved, worn regularly and displayed to their full advantage! 

As I share mine with you – perhaps you will share yours!

A grain of sand

A piece of dirt

A little scratch

A tiny hurt


Begins to grow

Begins to spread

Begins to build

With little said


And yet a hand

So far unseen

Creates and forms

And moulds a dream


Unwanted hurt

From humble start

Transformed and changed

In tender heart


A pearl is formed

Of value much

Beneath the care

Of a master touch


Tina – September 2010