The printer was acting funny. Disappearing ghost letters told me there was an issue. Another appliance dying perhaps. And that familiar question whispered in my head, “What else is going to go wrong?” I caught myself and chastised, you are always looking for the bad, remember ? How about tomorrow you collect good moments? And then tomorrow came and that’s today.
My morning started OK and then deteriorated. And after I yelled at Eamon for dropping the jumbo plastic peanut butter jar and cracking the lid off, I had that feeling again like the day was done and I was irreconcilably irritated. Remember only bad Mommies yell at their kids for spilled milk.
After laying hands on the printer, I know it was a lost cause. Yes it was too noisy anyway but I just couldn’t help myself from thinking, the first of the three bad things has happened. What’s next?
I’m fretting about this art project I’ve taken on. Thinking that it would be good problem solving and skill building for me to create this painted floor cloth. And I am suddenly in a panic over the painting part. So off to the craft store I go to overcompensate for my fear by overspending on art supplies.
Fiona and I roll up to the check out counter at the art supply store and my credit card has expired. Of course. Strike two. And now my anxiety is starting to burble. I’m also laughing because I warned myself that I needed to be looking for blessings instead of disasters. And this wasn’t any bit as bad as that time with the driver’s license expiring. Nothing will ever compare to that “bad”.
Next, we head to the grocery store to get a few items and some cookies she’s now decided she must have. Headed home with her hand in the cookie box in the back seat, I’m thinking about what’s next when I realize, I never strapped her in. Jesus! So I took this opportunity to stop in Panera Bread for a Thai chicken salad (favorite) and a potty break and calm myself down.
Fiona falls asleep on the ride home but wakes up when I try to bring her inside. That may not count as strike three but I stopped off for the box wine on the way home in anticipation of more disaster. I’m feeling slightly better that I may at least have the supplies to do the art job I must do, although no time, and I’m anticipating a fight when we go for the real nap. Sigh.
You heard that right? My brain went to that quicksand place where all anticipated bad happenings start rolling over each other and down into the bad hole ? That is called anxiety caused by a cognitive distortion. It is common. And I’m extremely aware of when I am choosing anxiety. So I said to myself, what’s dead is dead. (Daddy went and got a new printer in the next couple days.) Un-napped children act ridiculous but the very next day, the nap was two and a half hours long. And although the garage “paint studio” was stiflingly hot, the painting of the floor cloth went quicker and better than I expected because I stayed in process. It’s quite beautiful in fact.
Truly, there’s always enough time, there’s always enough creativity, and there’s always a way around the problems even if all of them hit at once. And there’s always something to laugh about instead. Anxiety doesn’t help and rarely wins life value points and I’m getting better and better about grabbing a hold of the anxiety and putting it in time out while I get on with my life. And usually your luck does even out in the end.
PS. New printer is installed and Fiona barfed all over the couch and I will be installing the decorations including floor cloth this week. Stay tuned.
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