“I am an old man and have known a great many troubles, but most of them have never happened.” – Mark Twain
Some days, but more often nights, I don’t even recognize myself. I say this because I can’t remember when I turned into such a worry wart. What happened to the carefree gal who was always up for an adventure and never stopped to think about the risks? What became of the overly-confident young woman who rather nonchalantly (and I’m ashamed to admit, somewhat dismissively) told her parents, “I’m fine. You guys worry too much!”
Well, I guess she grew older, had children, was blessed with grandchildren and came to believe that it was her job to pray for and fret over the well-being of each and every one of her family. And I have become an expert at it!
My overactive imagination doesn’t help matters as I can turn the best of plans into the worst of nightmares. This is never more true than when I am experiencing a bout of insomnia (which occurs far too often these days). It’s then that I tend to over-analyze every situation and come up with the worst case scenarios.
For instance, when members of my family are heading out on vacation, I start to think of all the things that could go wrong. What if a bear attacks the campsite? What if their plane gets hijacked? What if a tornado strikes? What if a rogue elephant charges the jeep? (This last one was when my daughter was on safari, so it’s not as ridiculous as you might think.)
Even everyday life can get the worry bugs going in my head. What if my kids lose their jobs? What if my granddaughters don’t make friends? But what if the ones they do make are a bad influence?
Some nights when sleep eludes me, I try to think of something fantastic like winning the lottery. But before I know it, I am concerned about how I would distribute my winnings and if everyone would be happy or would this just create problems for all of us. Only someone as adept at worrying as I am could turn a windfall into a liability.
The other day when my son and his family were leaving the farm, I couldn’t resist telling him to drive carefully. (As if that might be some talisman to keep them safe.) He gave me a hug and said, “We’ll be fine. You worry too much!”