I'm having a tough time walking my own talk today. Dread seems to be winning. The storm clouds hover. Dread is feeding my expectations with distorting serum. It has the capacity to make a self-fulfilling prophecy come true. So, here I am writing about it.....my attempt to shrink the monster.
When does it rear it's ugly head?
- You don't have enough information about a situation or event
- You don't feel like you have any control over said situation or event
- Someone has a history of being unpredictable when you see them
- You've had numerous previous experiences when a situation, or an event turned out horribly
- You can't predict at all how something is going to turn out.
Sometimes a vivid imagination is a friend......and sometimes? Well, it just about does you in.
Many examples come to mind.....starting a new job, preparing to write a final exam, waiting for a big personal event to happen, opening an unknown door, riding a new roller coaster, living in the midst of alcoholism, abuse, mental illness, or physical illness, addictions.............even attending a party where you don't know anyone.......oh, the list is endless and it can just about drive you batty. I remember how dreadfully terrified I was when one of my children had a high fever, or when my son would have a bout of croup......I was fine and functioning on all cylinders during the day, but when twilight hit? Dread would settle into the pit of my stomach and would send out pulsing pangs of fear as I struggled with my foreboding thoughts.
Dread is kind of like a fever now that I think about it...........you never know what follows it, or when it will break.
Do you think that a person who lives in an unpredicable environment gets used to the feeling of dread or do they become numb to it, protecting themselves by setting up an emotional cocooning shield of some kind? Is that how a person growing up in an alcoholic family copes with a permanently unwielding feeling of dread hanging over like a storm cloud.
This weekend, we return to Spencer's Island to attend a memorial service for my in-laws. It fills my thoughts with dread because of the unpredicability of the situation and the lack of information and control I have over the service, over our reception, etc, etc..... Alcohol is a factor too.
Though I am not a control freak (well maybe my family thinks otherwise, but I'm going with not being a control freak) I am an organizer. I also like to be involved. I am neither. The service has been hanging over this family's heads all summer long.....and it's now about to happen. Don't know how it's going to unfold.......don't know if the tension will be manageable or will it spill over in front of us all? I hope not.
OK...........I have to interupt this post with an aside...........as I am typing this, Julie Andrews as Maria Von Trapp is singing "I Have Confidence" I KID YOU NOT! I mean what are the odds of that song, written and sung in 1965 being played on the CBC in 2007, RIGHT AT THIS MOMENT?? It is sung during the scene when she is making her way to the Von Trapp mansion to take on the role of Nanny for 7 snotty kids and a whistle blowing anal retentive Captain whom she eventually falls in love with and escapes Austria during the Nazi regime.
Well, that just lifted the mood around here...........how fickle am I that I can be assuaged by a song from my childhood? You don't have to answer, really.....
Gee...........you know what I think is the kicker for evicting dread from the pit of your stomach? Humour, especially the absurdist kind. Music and lots of it. ......how about cranking that wonderful Proclaimers song.........I'm on my Way..........? Meeting it head on.................with the strength of a smile. AND..........watching this..........you ready??
I'm off to pack my suitcase so I can swing it wildly while I sing my confidence song......thank you Maria.........I think I just had a wink from the cosmos. Good thing because I had no idea how I was going to end this post.