I have anxiety issues.

I’m pretty sure I came into the world worried about whether or not someone was going to support my neck or drop me. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been haunted with worry.
As I mentioned before, I’ve been watching a lot of murder/mysteries while I attempt to rest up. It occurred to me last night that MAYBE putting myself through such stressful emotions such as

Don’t go in there alone, what in the blazes are you thinking?! You’re a skinny woman and he’s a serial killer!
There’s a dead body behind that door… don’t open it!
There’s someone behind you. Don’t you know? TURN AROUND YOU IDJITT!

probably isn’t the best thing for my sick body. Stress is a killer. It kills every good thing.

I tell my kids when they’re sick that there’s a battle going on inside of them… a battle between good and bad guys. The bad guys are what make us sick. The good guys try and kill the bad guys, but if we’re up and wiggling around the good guys can’t balance. They fall over, and the bad guys win.
(It’s to be assumed that the bad guys have impeccable balance. They do yoga.)

My good guys are definitely being knocked over by the stress of murder mysteries. It doesn’t help that this cold seems to have an agenda of hate against me.
I’m a good person, so it obviously doesn’t know me very well. Even after a week of misery, it still hasn’t gotten the point (maybe because I’ve been a bear all week?).

I went to bed last night after hearing about a threat being made to the schools… a vague threat with no specific school mentioned, no day… nothing really concrete. It was mostly a gigantic Scare Alicia Until She Wets Herself kind of a thing. As I laid in bed with school shootings dancing in my head, my anxiety took off. The scenarios became worse, my chest tightened, my thoughts took control of ME (instead of the other proper way ’round), and FEAR took hold.

Home school.
Move far away into the middle of nowhere. Build a one room cabin. Live off the land. Barter and trade for our wants. Don’t waste money on bras.
Bolt the doors. Bar the windows.
Murder! Mystery! Guns! Oh my!

I hate fear. Fear is so very powerful and controlling. It keeps you from success, from adventure, from LIVING. Living in fear means helicopter parenting and gallons of hand sanitizer. It means living in the false belief system that everything ought to be perfect: no broken bones, no hurt, no flat tires, no pain, no emergencies.

But the bloody truth (sometimes literally bloody) is that those things are inevitable and PRETTTTY MUCH the point of life. Bad things happen, so get insurance instead of hand sanitizer.

Disclaimer: I’m not selling insurance. I’m just sayin’.

The bad can make us stronger and better. In combating my anxiety, I’ve found the bad to be a gigantic catalyst for strength. Since this article was published, it’s given me a lot of fuel, a lot of inspiration, and an unexpected urge to get ANTI-FRAGILE tattooed on my biceps.
(And by biceps I *might* mean my fat-arm jiggle. And by “tattoo” I mean “draw with favorite pen.” And by “unexpected urge” I mean “slight, fleeting inclination.”)

Antifragile 3

Just days after we celebrated the life of Martin Luther King, Jr… just one little month after we celebrated the birth of Christ (and Joseph Smith), may we stand to remember the insurmountable good that comes from taking fear and LIVING ANYWAY.

What are you afraid of?
Write it down. Say it out loud. Phone a friend.
Then hit your knees, give that fear to God and burn it.
And then -my ever-conquering friend of courage -get up and live.

You have so much to offer -so much that is squelched by fear of the unknown. Fear is your darkest, meanest enemy.

For just as we celebrated the life of Christ last month -Him who DIED that we might LIVE -and renewed our resolves to LIVE BETTER at the beginning of this month, so shall we celebrate LOVE next month.
LOVE yourself enough to LIVE on top of your fears.

Don’t try to live without fear -that’s very nearly impossible -but live in such a way that fear becomes a catalyst for strength rather than a crippling disease.

Love yourself enough.
You deserve it.

(after-thought: maybe what I really need is a tattoo of a Hydra?  Then I can teach my grandkids a valuable lesson when they’re bathing me in the Old Folk’s Home.  “Grandma, what is THAT?!  When did you get a tattoo?!”  “It’s a hydra, children.  It’s the very embodiment of anti-fragilism, a movement started in 2014 by The Art of Manliness.com… hand Grandma the rag and let’s us talk about it.”)

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