Through The Terror Barrier and Set Yourself Free”
Editorial by Robert Kirwan
It is with sadness that I must admit that for the
first twenty-two years of my life here on Planet Earth I
was held back from so many wonderful experiences by what
is often referred to as the ‘Terror Barrier’.
first time I can recall coming face-to-face with the
‘Terror Barrier’ was when I was about ten years old.
I was with a group of friends and we were playing on the
side of a hill on the outskirts of Lively. There was a
cave with an opening that was just barely wide enough to
squeeze through. You had to put your arms in first and
then wiggle through the four foot tunnel. One by one my
friends all went into the cave. Some of them
encountering great difficulty and needing to be pulled
and pushed to get to the other side. When it was my
turn, I faced the opening and there it was! ‘The
friends were all encouraging me to come through, but no
matter what they said, I will never forget the terror
that gripped my mind and body as I looked at the small
opening. The coaxing did absolutely no good. There was
no way I was going to crawl into the hole.
day I lost out on the thrill and excitement that my
friends shared as they sat in the cave and enjoyed some
bantering and unique exploration opportunities. I also
lost a little bit of self-respect.
were many other times in my life up to the age of
twenty-two when I came face-to-face with the ‘Terror
Barrier’. There was the time when I was so afraid of
rejection that I didn’t ask my wife, who was sixteen
at the time I met her in Creighton, to attend the annual
Spring Bowling banquet with me. I still remember
attending the banquet alone and hating myself when she
too showed up at the event by herself. We spent a lot of
time together at that dance and only later, when I
finally had the courage to ask her to go out with me did
I discover that she had turned down four other boys,
telling them that she was already going to the banquet
with someone else, all the while waiting in hope for me
to ask her to be my date. I still kick myself for not
being able to break through the ‘Terror Barrier’ and
ask her to that banquet. I actually had nothing to fear,
but I still could not get past the barrier.
imprisoned by my own fears and lack of self confidence
until the day I graduated from university. I can still
remember vividly the feeling that came over me as I
vowed that I would never again allow the ‘Terror
Barrier’ to keep me from enjoying all of the
possibilities that lay ahead in my life. I promised
myself on that very day that no matter how great the
challenge, I would never again back down in fear. I
would take on anything and everything that came in my
twenty-two years I had stepped back from anything and
everything I truly feared. When I looked at my diploma
on graduation day, I said “no more” and I have been
free ever since.
you think hard enough, you may recall times when you
have come face to face with the’ Terror Barrier’.
You either stepped through it to freedom or back into
bondage, imprisoned by your own fears.
Terror Barrier comes up in front of us every time we
attempt to make a major move in life, especially when it
is into an area we have never traveled before. You
can’t escape it. There is always the fear of the
unknown, or worse, the fear of rejection or failure. I
have spoken with countless people, young and old, who
come right up to that barrier wanting to go ahead but
not being able to. These were people who could have
succeeded and wanted to go forward, but didn’t, and
lived to regret their decision.
like to think that these weekly editorials will help
some of my readers break through the ‘Terror
Barriers’ that they come up against in their life.
When you finally summon up all of your strength and make
a decision to “go for it”, most often you discover
that the barrier was nothing more than an illusion;
something that you built up in your own mind; something
that really wasn’t that bad after all. The next time
it happens, just say to yourself, “No more” and set
a good week!