I’m a worry wart. I worry about everything. No seriously, everything. I worry about whether or not my kids are having a good day at school (especially if our morning didn’t go so well). I worry about money (who doesn’t?). I worry about the economy, and for the past several months I’ve been exceedingly worried about the decline of women’s reproductive rights. I worry about my gay friends and whether or not they will have the same rights that I have. I worry about the decisions that we are collectively making to put people into office who clearly do not represent us. I worry about my grades. I worry about the impression that I make on my teachers. I worry about my friends and the things going on in their lives. I worry about their children. I worry about my Mama’s broken ankle and whether or not it’s going to heal well. I worry about what other people think. And then, I worry about the fact that I even allowed someone else’s impression into my mind. Are we clear? I worry. A lot.
Sometimes, my worrying makes me angry. Example: I see a dangerous situation on the road and I
start to get worried about the people who might get in a wreck. Then, I get mad that I have to be worried about these people that I don’t know because some other jackass, that I don’t know, is being dangerous. That’s not my damn responsibility! I do realize that my worrying has no effect whatsoever on anyone other than me. Whether I worry about it or not, those people on the road either are going to get in a wreck or they’re not. My worrying is not going to stop the wreck from happening. Neither are the cuss words that I am undoubtedly slinging through the windshield.
So, it seems that the practical answer to this conundrum would be to stop worrying about strangers in cars on the interstate, right? I can’t. I’ve tried. Really, I have. I just can’t. Somehow it makes me feel less human. Like I don’t have a heart. Like maybe if I just worry hard enough, or cuss them out enough, they’ll figure out that they’re all a bunch of jackasses anyway and settle down and act right. Do I really believe that my worrying will ever have that type of tangible positive effect? Of course not. I’m not delusional. But I just can’t be one of those people. I know that they are out there. People who truly don’t care about anyone other than themselves. I’ve met them. You’ve met them. They do exist.
I can’t be that. I do care about people, and therefore I worry about them, whether I know them or not. True, it isn’t the healthiest of habits to have. But if a stressful tummy keeps me feeling more human, then I guess it’s a fair trade. Don’t you think?