Oh yeah, the worrier in me lives, though I am trying to oust it from its cozy nesting spot. The worry gene is embedded in my father’s side of the family. He had a strong case of it, some of my cousins and aunts had it, and I too am blessed, err, I mean cursed with it as well.
My daughter and son have been official adults for awhile now and are going on two years living on their own. Yet I still become anxious if I know they’re at a party. A few days ago, my son, Tim, was at a gathering but left his car at our house to be picked up later that night. After it was past twelve, and I didn’t hear his friend drop him off to get the car, anxiousness kicked me with a vengeance. Afterall, Tim had to be at work the next day. A continuous loop of thoughts swirled in my head as I couldn’t settle into sleep. Where was he? Was the friend drunk? Would Tim be okay to drive home? Was he coming home? What if there had been an accident? And on and on my mind raced with all the usual worst-case scenarios. Finally, I heard the car pull into the driveway with the subsequent sound of car doors closing as Tim got into his vehicle and drove home. I was too wound up to sleep for at least another hour. Where had worry gotten me? Absolutely nowhere.
Similarly, I worried about my daughter, Jana, over the weekend. I had texted her to let her know she had received a package in the mail. When she didn’t respond that day or the next, worry kicked in. What if something happened to her and no one knew? Was she upset about something and not answering for that reason? I sent Jana another text asking her to please respond even if it were just a boo or a yah, which she did. I didn’t realize that she was working swing shift the first night I texted her nor that night as well. Again, worry had taken on its own miserable entity.
Worry drains the spirit. It takes away “living in the now”. And I should do better by now because I’ve certainly known better for years (thank you, Maya Angelou) When it comes to my kids especially, I need to let the worry evaporate. Afterall, I didn’t have parents when I was their age. I made it just fine, so I should trust that they’ll be able to navigate their world on their own terms. I think Bob Marley sang it best – “Don’t worry, be happy.” That should be my mantra.