It takes a tough cookie to admit they have fears!
I think you are getting lots of wonderful suggestions. The bottom line is you will need to judge what is safe for you. There really is not a one-size-fits-all answer to your question. Maybe judge each water source as you come to it. You will figure out what method works best for you.
Of course, it never hurts to pack a Sherpa. Then, the Sherpa could carry you across and you wouldn't even have to get your feet wet. THAT would be the way to go.