Recently there was some gunfire in my neighborhood. We live in a very nice neighborhood and it happened in the middle of the day on the weekend, less than a block from the farmers market. We were outside just about to walk the dogs when we heard the gunshots. I told my family about it because I thought it would be interesting to hear about. Again we live in a very nice neighborhood so something like this was pretty unexpected. Luckily no one was hurt during the incident. The problem with telling my family is now they worry even more about me. My mom called me the next day to make sure I was okay and was asking how we’ve been taking the dogs to the bathroom since the incident. To me it seemed like a silly question. The same way we always take them to the bathroom, outside on the grass. She said we were brave and to be careful. The thing is I don’t want to live my life in fear. Hopefully it was a one time incident but even if not what am I going to do? It’s not like I can just stop going outside or taking the dogs to the bathroom. She has encouraged me to live my life in fear, just as she does, for far too long. What is the point of life if you’re not living it? I understand that living life has different meanings for everyone. For me I don’t want to live my life in fear. I’m not going to go looking for danger but I’m also not going to stop enjoying my neighborhood while walking my dogs. At this point I almost feel bad for her. I’ve lived as she is living and it is exhausting to be constantly worrying. I wish she wouldn’t stress so much and would just enjoy life but I can’t force her to do that. Besides she probably doesn’t even know how if she wanted to at this point. She needs to at least stop continuing to put these same fears on me. It is not healthy for either one of us. She has put her fears onto all of her children but especially me as a girl. There are so many things in life that I see others do that I didn’t even realize where an option due to all of the fears she instilled in me. I have been trying hard to open my eyes to all of life’s wonderful possibilities and to keep telling myself, as well as my mom, that you can’t live your life in fear. Maybe one day it will give her some freedom as well.