my quote of the moment: "if you can attain repose and calm, believe that you have seized happiness." ~julie-jeanne-eleonore de lespinasse

August 7, 2012

what you don't know can kill you... with worry

i've heard the saying "what you don't know can't hurt you," but that's not really true, is it? i mean, if i'm walking along, and there is a rogue lion escaped from the zoo running straight at me, i think i'd kind of like to know so i can go a different way, as opposed to not knowing a crazed jungle beast was coming to eat me. i am one that likes to know what's going on so i can be prepared.

and sometimes, when something bad is going to happen, even if i can't change it, i'd still like to know. i like to be mentally prepared for the horrible, if i can, because then it saves me from blubbering in a corner because i was unprepared. i do not handle surprises well. or at least, bad surprises. i make plans, i prepare, i try to be ready for what life might throw at me, because when i am caught unawares, a freak-out ensues. and depending on the shock, it might be a while before i am collected enough to function.

and so, being that i know me very well, i am usually prepared for anything and everything. and mentally for all possibilities. because if i've thought it and worried about it, then, when and if it happens, i can deal with it. because if i've already worried over it, i'm past the freak-out stage, and can move straight on to the action stage.

that just means sometimes i let my imagination get the best of me. i give it free reign to be creative as it wants, to visualize all possibilities, not matter how unlikely. most situations that my crazed mind can invent never come into being, but that doesn't mean i don't wonder and worry until the moment has passed. and then, when those horrible possibilities are no longer possible, i move on to the next possible future of horror and drama.

still, sometimes reality surprises me. it catches even me unawares. things happen that not even i considered. and though i might have wasted so many precious moments worrying, sometimes the mental exercise in stress is enough to help me get through.

and yet, had i known what was going to happen, i probably would have worried and wondered more about the outcome. had i known these unexpected occurrences were even possible, it would have opened up a whole new realm of worry for me. and now that i know such craziness can happen, it builds on the scenarios that my frazzled imagination conjures, adding new stress over the future.

i let worry consume me. i know i shouldn't live in the apocalyptic possible futures, i should focus on the here and now. i should forget about the things that might happen, that could happen, that will most likely never happen, and if i feel the need to worry, i should worry about what's going on today. yet, there is the nagging in the back of my mind, all the worry that i do is what holds things together, that if i stop, if i just relax and go with the flow, then everything will fall apart, i will be taken unawares and off guard.

bad things will happen, whether i worry about them coming true or not. still, i worry that, if i don't worry, worse things will happen.

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