Worry — by Liimu

It sometimes seems no matter what I do, no matter how many post-its or To Do lists or Outlook reminders I have set up for myself to stay on top of the things in my life, lately I have still been waking up at 1 or 2 in the morning unable to return to sleep for thinking about what I’ve forgotten to do. This morning, at 2 am, it’s this blog that on my mind. Don’t feel bad, readers. Yesterday, it was something else.

I truly believe that this just as drinking is said to be the symptom of the disease of alcoholism, and not the issue itself, waking in the middle of the night anxious about having forgotten something isn’t the problem. What it is that I’ve forgotten isn’t even necessarily the problem. The problem is a lack of acceptance. Earlier today (okay, now yesterday) I was talking with my sister about a friend of hers who is dying of cancer. All the things I had just been ranting and raving about – my worries about upcoming tax payments, my skin now breaking out again because I gave in to my dairy cravings even though I now know I’m allergic, the aches and pains that come with age – suddenly seemed trite and unimportant. I told my sister how much I appreciated her sharing so candidly about her friend and how it reminded me that I need to be grateful and not get bogged down with my own privilege problems. She said, “You don’t even have privilege problems. You have privilege non-problems.” It’s true. Lately,

I have been worrying and complaining about things that aren’t even real. It’s the perception of how things are going in my life that is the problem, not how things are going.

The trouble is, my perception of things can actually be quite aggressive in staking its claim as a card-carrying member of the club for Things That Are Worth Worrying About. It has the right to do that, but I am the one who decides who is granted access to that club. Just for tonight, I’m restricting access to the things that really are worth worrying about. And as I fall back asleep, meditating on all the things I have to be grateful for – my husband and children, my home, my job, my health – taking a welcome break from my incessant worry prayers and spending the extra time saying prayers for all those around me who have real problems that only real prayer can solve.