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A Worry Wart No Longer

At the tender age of 5, I was accused of being a worry wart by my kindergarten teacher. While mocking me wasn't the wisest course of action, she was right: I was an anxious kid, terrified that my parents - when they were late picking me up - were either dead in a car crash or had abandoned me, and terrified that a kindergarten classmate would be left behind because she was dawdling.

I was 5 years old, and I was a wreck.

I spent the better part of my lifetime living in an uncertain future, worrying about the weather's not cooperating, about friends being in car accidents (that was a constant thread), about people I loved dying, about being poor and tossed into the street. The convoluted and circular reasoning went like this: since none of those terrible things happened, obviously the positive results were the result of my worrying. No one else I knew worried about such things; obviously they didn't understand how bad things could get.

Decades later, a search for a power greater than myself revealed were I had gone wrong: worrying
had been my attempt to control the world around me, and I - in a spiritually blank life - thought that I was powerful enough to control the future, if only I worried enough. I had believed in god (lower case) but not in God (upper case). Lower-case god had let me down repeatedly (people I loved got sick, bad things happened, and all the rest). Upper-case God, however, gently held me while I fought my anxieties. Eventually it all came together as I realized the fallacy of my belief system. I was not all powerful, God was not out to get me or the people I loved, and worrying was a spectacular waste of time and energy.

What does this have to do with Day 5 (#presence) of the 10 Days of Positivitea Challenge? Just this: My intention today was to live in today's present so that I could be present for myself and my loved ones. And so I did, and so it was.


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