Tonight is not Sunday. It is Wednesday, I think. I have been home for six days after our area was pummeled by snow and cold. I am not complaining at all. I have actually had the experience to be a stay at home Mom for the past few weeks. In between all of the whining and crying about being bored , I have enjoyed having the very rare opportunity to be at home with my children.
My professional life as an elementary school principal is so busy. Trying to manage both a career and home becomes overwhelming and so I have to really be attentive so that I feel like I am giving equal attention to both areas of my life. School has been cancelled for 7 days so far this year, a record during my lifetime. This has never happened before. We are usually lucky to just get one snow day a year.
But, like most Sunday nights, here I am with “going back to work” anxiety. This feeling usually hits me about early evening, after dinner, on Sunday nights before I go back to work. Tonight, I played around on the computer for a while and watched the news. My husband eventually meandered off to bed and I soon followed. I said my prayer, nestled underneath my covers, and situated the dogs in a comfortable cuddle spot. Then my mind started thinking about work. I began to think about all of the meetings I have to reschedule and all of the work that needs to be done to prepare our students for upcoming standardized tests. I began to think about some of the more serious problems I must face again in the morning and how I will approach them. I began to think about my after school Mom duties and getting my daughter to piano lessons and then getting the twins to basketball. My brother, who is the coach, will be gone tomorrow night so I will be in charge. I don’t know anything about basketball. Before I knew it, an hour passed by. My stomach began to growl and I finally gave in to come downstairs and wait out the anxiety.
I know that all of my work will get done. I know that tomorrow night at this time, all of my professional and motherly duties will be done and I will be sound asleep from exhaustion. I just have to go through this weird ritual that occurs whenever I transition from one role to another.
Anxiety is such a horrible feeling. I am a big worrier. I worry about everything. I worry a lot about circumstances I cannot control. I cannot control other people’s behavior or actions, I cannot control all of the bad in the world. I cannot control what might happen tomorrow when we all go back out into the real world. Being out of control drives me crazy. I always want the happy ending. I always want situations to turn out for the best. I always want everything to just be okay.
People always say things like, “You have to go through the bad, to see the good.” “Every situation is a learning experience.” “You will grow from your mistakes.” My very good friend Julie says, “You need to trust in God and have faith.” I try really hard to have that blind faith.
Yeah, I get it. I know life is not perfect. I know not every situation is going to turn out the way I want , yet I still worry which then steals my sleep and sometimes my happiness. I worry the most about my children. I want them to be healthy, happy, and safe every single day.
Sometimes I cannot watch the news because I worry about what is happening in the world. The news always reports on the most dreadful, awful stories. I find myself thinking, “Gosh, I hope that never happens to me or my family.” Just think what it would be like of the news stations reported only on all of the good happening in our communities and in the larger world? What would it be like if for one entire week, the only news stories reported were of kind acts, good deeds, and happy endings. Would the ratings of television networks really go down or would people start watching and really start paying attention? Is there the possibility that if we focused on all the good people do, we might encourage others to take on random acts of kindness and good deeds? Might it be possible that by spreading good news and being positive about our lives, might change our world?
I don’t know how to not worry, but I keep praying about it. I hope that one of these days, I will learn to just trust that whatever happens, I can deal with it.
Simply put, tomorrow I go back and will do the best I can do and learn to let go of what I cannot control. Now, off to sleep .