Tuesday, January 19, 2010

What, Me Worry?

I have that awful pit in my stomach today. I am fearful that something "bad" is just around the corner. I am certain that something profound is going to change the course of my life, and not for the better

I don't know if this is because things seem to be going good right now and that means something is going to rock my world and throw me off course.

Am I the only one who ever feels this way? Do I need to seek Psychiatric help immediately.

I visited a Psychiatrist about this issue many years ago. I sat in her New York office and told her that I truly loved life and appreciated every day. As a result I was afraid it would be taken away--that all my hopes and joys, dreams and delights would be smashed.

She told me I was morbid. I never went back to see her.

Now, in my old age I wonder if she was on to something. Am I morbid? Anyone who knows me would strongly disagree. But then why am I so fearful that the world will turn upside down tomorrow?

Look at the poor Haitian people--in 15 seconds they lost lives, limbs, loved ones. That's how it happens.

Unfortunately I have had experience in this arena. I lost a beloved father when I was 19, a best friend/sister when I was 35, and have been caring for a mother with Alzheimer's for the last 16 years. That's my entire family.

Now, I have a wonderful new family and I worry about them.

I concede that indeed I worry about worrying. But I have become very, very good at it. And I wouldn't recommend it to anyone. Worrying can become a full time job.

I wish I could just worry about my wrinkles and my sagging eyelids but I can't. They seem so insignificant in the face of real worry.

I have more important things to worry about. Doesn't that sound ridiculous?

I recently read this cartoon. The Psychiatrist says to the patient, "You worry too much! It doesn't do any good!" The patient replies, " It does for me...95% of the things I worry about never happen."

That about sums up how I feel. And those five % of things scare the daylights out of me.

1 comment:

  1. Oh my friend, I live on your street. I could easily let myself curl up under my bed with worry, if I let myself 'go there'. Generally I am a pretty low key person. But I think it is because I do have a 'it could be much worse' attitude.
    I grew up in a huge foster family and heard many stories from foster siblings about abuse I could not imagine. I went to Haiti as a teen and saw with my own eyes what true poverty is. My mom died just months after her 50th bday, out of the blue. A year later we almost lost our third baby to an undiagnosed metabolic disorder.
    So when things come up, I let them roll off my back. Because deep down I too walk around waiting for the next shoe to drop. Because I know it can happen. It's happened before and I am not immune. So I give myself pep talks and have to just be thankful for today, this moment, when all is still going pretty okay.
    Does that help?