Monday, December 28, 2015

Fear of Snowmen: Winter Confessions by Connie Vines

It is the holiday season.  Jingle Bells, Santa Claus, Reindeer, Mugs of Hot Chocolate, and Snowmen.

Now just wait a second, no one mentioned there were going to be any Snowmen!

Yes, I must confess I have a phobia.  My phobia has a name, too. Hominochionophobia.

It is an odd fear and since I reside in southern California, a fear I can avoid/ ignore—except during the winter holidays.  The reason I cannot ignore my odd little phobia during the winter is because Hominochionophobia is a fear of snowmen.

Here in the United States, snowmen are everywhere during the holidays.  On the daily news, imprinted on paper plates, fashioned into huge inflatables on people’s front lawns.  You get the idea.
What most people see.

In my world, snowmen Christmas cards are turned so that only the back of the card faces outward, no snowmen decorations or ornaments are allowed in the house. Under no circumstances can I be expected to watch any television shows or movies revolving around snowmen.

Over the several years, I have been working on overcoming this fear. Why?  Because the school counselor thought I needed an intervention.  Yep, you guessed it.  The entire administrative staff gathered around my desk, singing “Frosty the Snowman”.  Oh, it gets even better.  They were all wearing top hats, and a pointy snowman nose was fastened to each one of their excited faces. They leaned over me and  I nearly had a panic attack when I jumped from my chair.

What I see.
I began with tiny steps.

I made progress.

I drew glasses on the faces of the snowmen on Christmas cards.

I was able to look at gift-wrap covered with pictures of snowmen.

I didn't glance way when we drove past lighten displays.

I thought I had everything under control.

Then it happened!

Play the “screeching violin in Alfred Hitchcock’s bloody Psycho shower scene” here.

My reaction when we meet!
Four days ago, I attended my brother’s Christmas Eve party.

I was okay upon spying the welcome mat with the prominent face of a snowman. I stepped on the mat, instead of leaping over the top, or darting around the edges.  I even commented on the snowman’s very large top hat as a tree topper being a showstopper when I stepped inside the entryway.  Sugar cookies decorated as snowmen, on the appetizer table, no problem.

After the wonderfully prepared buffet dinner and before the children opened their gifts, I went to the powder room.

Play the “screeching violin” again, only much, much louder!

I stepped inside the large room, locked the door and turned around.

I did not scream. I did jump and turn around and bump into a snowman on the counter.  There were snowman towels, snowman rugs—snowmen everything!  My vision became a bit fuzzy but I did not hyperventilate.

I regained my composure, washed my hands and sedately exited the powder room.

However, I must have looked a little wild-eyed when we gathered together for pictures because my sister-in-law exclaimed, “Didn’t anyone warn Aunt Connie?”

This snowman is life size!  

Happy New Year,

Connie Vines

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See you next month.

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