Today is a crazy day. I am currently sitting in a waiting room while my oldest is having oral surgery this morning so I apologize if this post is all over the place. I’m a little distracted. To spare you the gory details, I will just say that she has a permanent tooth that never came down that developed a cyst around it up in her gum so it has to be removed along with another tooth on the bottom to give her an even number of teeth on the top and bottom. My youngest has been put under general anesthesia many times (at least 7 times) for her many medical issues so you would think that I would be comfortable with this by now, but that is not the case. I still sit here worrying as I think about all the things that can go wrong while she’s under and worrying about the recovery and how long she will end up being out of school and gymnastics. I worry about all of the classes she is missing right now and if she is going to be able to make up all the work. I worry about her bruising and being embarrassed to go to school. I worry about the braces that are coming as soon as she is healed. I think every mom has these feelings in these types of situations, right? Meanwhile, my husband is sitting here without a care in the world. Why is it that moms worry about these things and dads don’t seem to or at least it doesn’t seem to affect them in the same way? I guess it is in the way we are wired. I don’t know. I wish I knew the secret to stop worrying about everything or not let it affect me. I wish I could just trust that everything is okay and will work out the way it is supposed to. Is my worrying about it going to change the situation at all? Is it going to make the surgery and recovery any different? The answer is no. It is always no. These are the things that my husband says to me all the time. I know worrying won’t change the outcome so why do it? I know these things in my head but it doesn’t stop the worry from coming and the sleepless nights.
I feel like the older I get, the more I worry. The older my kids get, the more I worry. You think that you worry a lot when you are a first time mom, but I now think that was nothing compared to worrying about teens trying to navigate life and the things this world can do to them. The worries move from, “Is the baby pooping enough?” to a whole new, more intense set of worries. Things seem more serious somehow. Is my kid connecting with strangers that could cause her harm? Is she making friends? Is she hanging out with the right crowd? What about boys? Is she confident in herself? Does she see the beauty inside herself? What kind of person is she growing into? Is she making good grades? Is she taking the right classes to get into college? What college is she going to? What about the image she is portraying on social media? The list goes on and on. These are the things that keep me up at night. I don’t know how to stop the cycle of worry, but I sure do need to figure it out. It is not doing any of us any good. In fact, worrying actually has a physical impact on your body. It can cause increased muscle tension, increased heart rate, fatigue, nausea, shortness of breath, and headaches. My worry and stress definitely manifest in the form of headaches and sleepless nights. It’s so not fun. I wish I could stop! I NEED to stop! I HAVE to stop! I know these things, but it just doesn’t end. I don’t know of any mom that doesn’t worry about her kids. We are all in this Worry Wart Club together. I know that sharing my worries and frustrations with other moms helps, but it doesn’t take it completely away. I think I will worry about my kids the rest of my life. I know my mom still worries about me and her mom still worries about her. I want to teach my daughters not to worry, but I know it is in their nature as females. All moms worry. I guess the key is how you respond to worry. How you deal with it can make or break you. I know some people that let it consume them and others that seem to just let it roll off their backs. I guess I am somewhere in the middle. I don’t think it consumes me all the time, but it is definitely enough that it affects me physically sometimes. I do pray a lot and that helps, but it doesn’t seem to stop it from coming the next time. Unfortunately, I can’t leave you with any words of wisdom on how to magically stop worrying about your kids. I wish I knew the answers. If you know the magic, please fill me in! Let the Worry Wart Club unite and together figure out how to stop letting worry affect us!
Anchored in worry today,
P.S. According to the doctor, the surgery went better than expected. She is doing great and is providing us with much entertainment and laughs in her loopy state. See, worrying for nothing!