• Tyierra R. Henderson

A Woman's Fear: An Essay


“Hello?” I yelled sitting in an old beaten chair in a faintly lit room.

I could hear a storm banging on the roof of this empty building. My heart racing not knowing how I got there. I tried to wipe the sweat from my forehead but couldn’t lift my hands. They were tied behind me.

“Is there anyone there? Help!” I screamed with what little strength I had left. There was no answer. I could taste blood from a busted mouth. I was covered in confusion because I didn’t know what I did to deserve any of what was happening.

“What is this? Where am I?” I felt tears pooling in my eyes as I continued to question.


In that moment, as a tear fell, I saw her. Standing in the distance in front of me, barely visible in the dim light; a tall curvy woman with dark silky hair.

I sensed the power she owned radiating from her smooth glowing skin. Her black heels knocked against the floor as she moved closer. I couldn’t make out her face but could smell her tempting scent.

Soon, she was next to me. Clearly, she wasn’t there to help. I was there because of her. I just didn’t understand why.

“Who are you? Why tie me to this chair?” The nervously shaking words barely made it passed my bruised lips.

The woman, whose face I still couldn’t make out, chuckled. Finally, her silence broke.

“Me? I am what keeps you up at night. I’m that noise you hear outside your window; that voice that creeps behind you in the fog. I’m that shadow in the corner of your eye. I am the reason you shutter and hide, the terror that keeps you from your triumph. You think it’s everyone else around you but it isn’t. It’s just me. You are afraid of being the best, of being good enough, of the power you embody because those things are in the shadows hiding with me.”

My panic eased as I looked towards where her face would be, “And who are you?”

The woman moved closer, her smell still sweet but dominant. Her chest lowered to place a cheek to mine. I could feel her breath touch my ear as she spoke.

“I’m… you.”

When she pulled back, her face revealed the mirror image of me. I was my own fear. The moment of revelation pulled me from my sleep and into a pool of my own sweat. It was a dream, rather a nightmare. That was the day I realized the truth.

A woman’s fear is nonexistent.

We make these excuses in our head defeating us before we even begin; “I’m not strong enough, clever enough; just not enough.” None of those constrains, ropes, are real. They’re hallucinations we create in our minds. There is nothing in this world a woman cannot do once we release that horror, that dark voice in our ear, and understand the power of living beyond our made up fears.