Lancer Link

  • FB game against Cathedral 11/9

  • Boys soccer tryouts begin 11/12

  • Cross Country league finals at Guajome at 3:15 p.m. 11/13

  • College app workshop @ lunch 11/13

  • Veteran's Day no school 11/12

Filed under Sports

Zahra Alawi climbs over her fears

Photo credited to Zahra Alawi.

Photo credited to Zahra Alawi.

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.

Email This Story

About six years ago, a young boy was climbing up the side of a building. His nine-year-old cousin watched him as he struggled to stay on the wall, then fell from two stories up. The simple mistake resulted in a temporary coma, but it also had a long term effect on his little cousin. 

The boy’s cousin was sophomore Zahra Alawi, who has now been rock climbing for six months. Her dedication to this activity actually arose from experiencing that horrible accident so long ago.

“I feel like because of what happened to him, it pushes me to climb more because although what happened to him was horrible, it pushes me to work harder and become safer at climbing with more strength,” Alawi said.

With just yourself, a wall, a mat and some chalk to help you out, rock climbing may seem intimidating to some people, especially after witnessing the worst aspects of climbing. Since her cousin’s accident, Alawi has been afraid of heights. However, she refused to succumb to the terrifying feeling she felt when she first tried rock climbing, and instead, she fell in love with the way it helps her defeat personal fears.

Climbing has entirely been an outlet for me to express who I am.”

— Zahra Alawi

“What hinders me in climbing is my fear of heights, but I use it as a way to cope with my fear and to get rid of it,” Alawi said. “After my first fall, I knew it was something I could handle, and something I can use to get over my fear. It’s just my own mind telling me I can’t [do it], so it’s all about getting over that fear and saying, ‘No. I can do that.’”

Through climbing, Alawi has worked on improving herself as an individual. However, part of her success is still due to the friendly and interactive environment at her climbing gym. Besides independently learning techniques and getting familiar with the activity, she also remains opened to help and feedback from other climbers.

“You could be struggling with a hold and someone will shout from below, ‘Put your left foot there,’” Alawi said. “So, climbing is entirely a community sport. If someone’s having trouble, you help them out. It definitely helps me socially because it granted me the ability to talk to people and it’s helped with making sure I’m not worried about my self-image. Climbing has entirely been an outlet for me to express who I am.”

Feeling self conscious has been a long term struggle for Alawi, but now, it is just another fear that can be conquered by climbing.

“I have to get over my fear if I want to be a good climber because when you’re climbing, you do not want to feel an adrenaline rush,” Alawi said. “I’d be scared while I’m climbing, and that leads me to making really bad decisions, thus not reaching how far I can actually go on my climb. But it’s okay to be calm, and everything is going to work out in the end. That’s something that you have to learn while climbing.”

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

About the Writer
Catherine Allen, Opinion Editor

Catherine Allen is a junior at CHS and is looking forward to her second year on Lancer Link as this year's opinion editor. Catherine is passionate about...

Leave a Comment

As a public forum for student expression, Lancer Link welcomes letters to the editor and comments on articles, but reserves the right to refuse inappropriate letters and comments.

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.

Navigate Left
  • Zahra Alawi climbs over her fears


    Boys soccer team tryouts are held

  • Zahra Alawi climbs over her fears


    Freshman girls make varsity cross country team

  • Featured Athlete

    Asa Turner goes to the All American Bowl

  • Zahra Alawi climbs over her fears


    Inside Carlsbad beach volleyball

  • Zahra Alawi climbs over her fears


    Mountain biker rides toward new team

Navigate Right
The School Newspaper of Carlsbad High School
Zahra Alawi climbs over her fears