BRYAN - Fear Week on Brazos Valley This Morning is all about facing an uncomfortable or unsettling fear. For me? That's the feeling of being "stuck" or "restrained" in a confined space.
I figured, what better way to conquer that fear than with folks who deal with confined spaces on a regular basis. So I made my way out to TEEX Riverside Campus to face my fear through their confined space trailer.
This mobile training unit is fully equipped with narrow tunnels, sound effects, and even fog! All of which helps add to my anxiety.
Before I could climb in, instructors at TEEX spent 30 minutes helping me fit into a full body harness and safety gear, along with a go-pro camera attached to my helmet.
Why so much gear for such a small space? Well, this mobile unit is actually the same one students at TEEX use to train in the facility's Rescue program. And I was about to get a dose of what they go through.
After I was all hooked up and strapped in, it was time for the fun part, being lowered into my first small, confined space.
"Ugh, it's dark down here," I say as I become more and more aware of what I was about to do.
Once I reached the bottom, I had to climb my way through the main narrow tunnel, which is when the anxiety starts to settle in. Despite the darkness, fog and obstacles within the tunnel, I am able to make it all the way to the end.
However, I found climbing out was the hard part. The narrow space made it nearly impossible to turn around, forcing me to crawl out backwards.
I did it! But it wasn't over yet.
As if once wasn't enough, I got to do it all over again, but this time, all while wearing a self-contained breathing apparatus. Immediately I could feel the added weight strain me, making me feel stressed and causing me to breathe much heavier throughout the entire exercise.
The goal of this entire journey was to use the "exposure method" to conquer my fear in hopes of no longer feeling anxious or nervous when placed in a confined situation. I'm glad to say, it worked!