Taking Stock with Rob Stocks - March 28, 2011

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Whether we like to admit it or not – everyone has something they fear, just a little bit.

With me it’s spiders – a common one I know but honestly they send a shiver up my spine and almost freeze me to the spot.

I once spent the night cocooned in my own mosquito net in a hotel room in the Mekong Delta, so afraid, was I, of the creepy crawlies.

On a separate occasion, in an Indonesian hotel room, I packed off My Good Wife, armed with a bottle of DEET, to deal with a particularly large and nasty looking specimen. That was a real beast of an arachnid, but I won’t even go near a little old British spider – despite the fact I know it’s completely harmless.

That’s the problem with fears and phobias, they’re completely illogical. You know something can’t hurt you but it terrifies you anyway.

For good friend of mine – it used to be flying.

I still remember him sitting firmly strapped to his seat on a flight across the States, refusing to take a peek at the Grand Canyon out of the window. It didn’t matter where on the plane he sat. If it was going to crash, it was going to crash. But he wasn’t going to let go of the arm rest, never mind look down.

Unfortunately, right now, The Munchkin is developing fears and phobias of her own – which are proving something of a problem.

If she was afraid of the dark, or monsters under the bed – common problems with little ones, so I’m led to believe – then I’d be able to cope. They are indoors and manageable to a certain extent.

Unfortunately The Munchkin has decided the one thing which causes her to freeze in terror is the bluebottle.

That’s not true – it’s all flies, or indeed anything that buzzes.

In her head, anything that buzzes is automatically a bee and that means it’s going to sting her.

Given the fact she’s never actually been stung, it all seems somewhat irrational.

However, it makes picnics in the park a real problem – the arrival of even the tiniest fly ushers in a spate of screaming, shaking and general panic.

“Mummy... BEE!!!”

I’ve been trying showing her pictures of flies and bees at home, in a bid to calm her worries.

But it doesn’t seem to work. She’ll laugh at the laptop but the moment a friendly bumble bee buzzes by the screams return.

It’s certainly got me on edge every time we’re out and about.

I don’t worry about spiders any more. No, all I have to fear is, literally, fear itself.