Just Getting Through The Day Fills Me With Stress!


We’ve all heard incredible stories of people who have yanked themselves back from the brink of death through sheer willpower, determination and a positive attitude. These people had devastating illnesses, life-changing disabilities and no support system, yet they did it.

I am not one of these people. Should fate show up with bad news, I’ll probably head into full whine mode, never to return. I don’t have a chipper little voice in my head saying, “You can do it!” I have little Debbie Downer saying, “You’re never going to pull this off.”

Plus, thanks to all the grim foreboding with which I’ve been blessed, I am pretty sure how I’m going to die — a lethal combination of stress and guilt. I can’t do anything without one or the other showing up, usually both.

Let’s say I wake up in the morning (best case scenario). Instead of hopping brightly out of bed to greet a brand-new day full of promise and potential, I analyze how I slept. Was I fitful? Tossing and turning, watching the clock, getting up several times to roam aimlessly around the house?

I feel guilty about that.

But if I slept well, rising just before the alarm, birds chirping and coffee cheerfully making itself in the kitchen, well, it’s probably because I turned in too early last night. Lazy bum.

Let’s say I have breakfast — or not. Is it really the most important meal of the day? Or is it just a lump of extra calories slowly making their way to my stomach and thighs, while carefully avoiding my upper chest area, where I could use them? Oh, the stress.

I get dressed, hopefully, into something fresh from the dryer, and not the same pair of slacks I wore for two hours yesterday. Horrors!

Starting the car is always fun. Whether or not it leaps into action, I am plagued by the window sticker nagging me to change my oil, a gas gauge threatening to read less than half full and constant worry that my tire pressure has crossed the line into poundage that will have me wasting precious rubber on every turn.

I get to work, check my e-mails and true guilt sets in. How to prioritize? Whom to delete? And, worst of all, which to “report as spam?”

All I wanted to do was print out an e-mailed receipt, not police the universe. It’s too much responsibility. The stress is overwhelming.

And yet, if I don’t report it, those diabolical spammers will foist themselves upon someone else. It’s my duty to report them. Oh, the guilt.

Now you’re saying, “Why, Debbie, from your calm and collected exterior, I never would’ve guessed you were such a hot mess on the inside. Isn’t there any relief for you — any time you can relax, sit back and enjoy life?”

Well, yes there is.

Sometimes I get sick.

And having a doctor order me to drop off the grid is pure bliss.