When did I become so fearful?
Sometimes I just feel like growing up means adding fears/new things to be neurotic about to a long growing list.
I remember when I was younger, I used to pack myself a small lunch, gather together all of my kid survival gear (walking stick, compass, pocket knife, etc), and just take off into the woods... tramping around through spider webs and who knows what else for hours. Now, I go into the woods and have to put on my tall cowboy boots, tuck my jeans in to keep ticks away, spray myself down with mosquito repellent, grab a stick to make sure I'm not walking through any spider webs on my face... and sometimes I even bring pepper spray just in case of wild animals. Seriously. I was more courageous at 10. It's as if just being aware of risks (ticks, spiders, snakes, poison ivy, bears) has had a negative influence, even though the only thing I've ever had a bad encounter with on that list were spiders.
I used to roll in the grass or jump in piles of leaves... now, a pile of leaves might as well be a pile of spiders and bugs to me, because that's instantly what I imagine.