Worried about a nuclear attack, alien takeover, or a natural disaster? Well, you needn’t. I’ve got it covered. My worrying about it almost guarantees it won’t happen.
Every time we pass an accident on the freeway, I’m certain it’s someone I know and love. I’ll send out a mass group text nonchalantly inquiring “Hi ya’ll. Howzit goin’?”
If someone is late, my family will mock me, “They’re probably dead. It’s the only explanation.” Then they laugh like they’re all funny or something. Sad thing is, that’s a direct quote that I’ve never lived down.
One day I was hiking with my husband and Delbert, my dog. As we stood overlooking a very deep crevasse, the dog stood close to the edge of the cliff and sniffed the air. “What would you do if Delbert fell down there?” I asked. “He’d be dead for sure. Would you climb down a rope to retrieve his body? I don’t see how you would ever get him out. He’d be way too heavy. You’d have to just leave him there. Worse, what if he didn’t die but was badly hurt? It would be horrifying to look down and see him suffering and not be able to help.”
Dee looked at me for a moment and then said, “If I thought the way you did, I’d shoot myself!” I’m pretty sure he was serious.
I don’t know why I do that. It isn’t fun to envision all the grisly details of every possible scenario. But what can I do? It’s a curse. On the other hand, what if it’s a gift that diminishes catastrophes galore?
It seems that all the truly dreadful things that have happened in my life are things that I never supposed or expected. When the jaws of disaster clamp around my middle like a crocodile, ripping out my large intestine and waving it like a scarf before clinching onto my head and then spitting it out onto the grass, where it rolls into the gutter and is swept down the drain into the culvert… you get the idea… that’s when I’m caught off guard! It’s easier to worry and thus dispel the possibility. For example, it’s a pretty good gamble that the above encounter with said crocodile won’t happen. Whew! Cross that one off the list of possibilities. Glad I worried about it.
Lately I’ve been preparing for a disaster by putting together a 72-hour survival kit. “I would probably need this,” I tell myself, “and for sure I’d want that!” I don’t even have everything on the suggested list and still my pack keeps getting heavier and heavier. Crap! I can’t even lift it. Now what am I going to do if all the neighborhood children are depending on this one pack to survive and I can’t get it out of the closet, which if it weren’t buried in the rubble, I couldn’t budge anyway.
I realize that as we speak there are actual atrocities taking place in the world. Carnages that even I can’t imagine. And if I can’t picture them, they probably will happen. Sometimes I feel so powerless. I need to stop and think of all the calamities my worrying and stewing has prevented. And for that, my friend, you can be grateful.