Blogs Are Stupid

Doesn't anyone believe in Dear Diary anymore? What happened to the joy of putting actual pen to paper? And why does every ordinary Jane and John think they can write well enough to burden the world with their scribblings? It’s a mystery that badly needs solving. My first entry contains my thoughts about blogging and will set your expectations. The rest will probably be stream of consciousness garbage, much like you’ll find on any other blog. Perhaps we will both come away enlightened.

Monday, June 11, 2007

What...Me...Worry?

I'm one of those people who is always worried about something. This is a trait shared by all of the women in my family. We worry. We stress. We stew. If we can't find something tangible to worry about, like kids, or bills, or the leaky roof, we invent shit and worry about that.

What the...what the hell is that? Is that a lump? That feels like a lump. It wasn't there yesterday. Was it? No, I'm sure it wasn't. Maybe it's just a pimple. Or an ingrown hair. Or a cyst. Yes, that's it. A cyst makes perfect sense. But it doesn't hurt. They say cancer doesn't usually hurt. Oh my god I've got cancer. I knew this was going to happen. I should have taken Omega 3 like they said. I should have eaten more food with those...whaddya call 'em...antioxidants. Yes, that's it. Maybe it would help if I took some now. Surely it can't hurt. I'm going to the store right now to get Omega 3 and antioxidants. I need tampax and ketchup anyway. I better call the doctor before I leave though. If I call now, I might be able to get in first thing in the morning. The sooner we start chemo, the better. Wait...where did it go? It was here a minute ago, I'm sure of it. Maybe I'm not dying of cancer! I better not get my hopes up though. It could be some kind of strange disappearing cancer. I'm still calling the doctor. I could probably wait and see if it comes back though. I wonder what I'm going to make for dinner. I should pick up a Stouffers lasagne while I'm at the store. I'm far too ill to cook.

I am a chronic insomniac. Part of that is just due to the fact that my circadian rythyms are completely opposite that of normal people. I am a night owl by nature. But it is mostly because often, I just can't shut off my brain. I lie in bed and examine the issue du jour from every possible angle. I carefully dissect it. I lay the guts of the matter out in front me and then poke and prod them until A) I arrive at a solution, B) My body slips into unconsciousness in self defense.

One might think I would resort to sleep aids. Ambien, Lunesta, Sonata...one might think I would be popping those things like candy. And I'll admit, it's tempting. But alas, I cannot avail myself of these modern day wonderments. Why? Well, because the house might catch on fire.

I was never one of those people who could leave work and not worry about it until 9 am the next morning. I am not a cavalier or carefree kind of Mom. The adage "Everything will work out for the best" is my personal anethema.

My oldest child is well over 5 feet tall, and I still make him sit in the backseat. If I thought I could wrangle his ass into a safety seat, I would. I insist on bike helmets, athletic cups, and now that one of my kids is sporting $5,000 worth of orthodontia, I insist on a mouth gaurd as well. I slather them with sunscreen every. single. time. we go to the pool or any time they will be outside for an extended periods of time. I have prohibited football. Spare me the statistics. I know. I don't care. They aren't playing. Ever.

You get the point.

Aside from being a tad..ahem...overprotective, I'm also the kind of person who should not read about stuff like global warming, or watch movies about meteors the size of a cruise ship plummeting to the earth.

And yet I do. Because a worry wart's motto is "Forewarned is forearmed".

So...the thing that is freaking me the flock out right now is....

Pthalates.

Recently, while waiting for Pre-Pubescent One to have his braces tightened, I picked up a National Geographic magazine, which, one would think, is a perfectly innocuous little publication.

One would be wrong.

In this particular issue, was an article about all the chemicals that are common in our everyday lives, and how they are slowly destroying our bodies and our brains.

Now, I read all of it. Every word. But it contained far too much scary shit for me to process without lapsing into a full blown delirium of panic. So, as I normally do when faced with a plethora of really scary shit....I focused on but one aspect of the issue; one which seemed to offer the most significant potential for being really friggen dangerous. In other words, I picked the chemical that seemed the most likely to turn me into a walking biohazard, and devoted myself fully to worrying about it.

Pthalates. Pthalates are a class of chemicals that are used to make plastics pliable. At first, this doesn't really seem like a truly pervasive threat. But if you really start to think about it...Tupperware. Bottled Water. Ziploc bags. Saran Wrap. Laundry Baskets. Lunch boxes. Toothbrush bristles. Automobile dashboards. Coolers. Toy bins. Those cheap plastic tumblers that they sell at Wal-Mart 12 for a dollar and the matching cereal bowls with the straw built into the side.

Dear God. It's everywhere. I could maybe stop using tupperware and drinking bottled water. I could give up plastic cups and bowls. I could, realistically, replace most of the things in my home with those made only of natural materials.

But give up ZIPLOC bags?? The mind boggles.

I think, instead, I will simply stop reading National Geographic magazine. And Newsweek. Time. USA Today. Reader's Digest. Popular Science.

Perhaps periodicals are not a good choice of reading material for me. I should maybe stick to fiction.

Really, really fictional fiction.

I'm starting a twelve step program...Worriers Anonymous. Our motto will be

"Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy." ~Leo Buscaglia

or maybe...

"A hundredload of worry will not pay an ounce of debt."
~George Herbert

or perhaps...

"How much pain they have cost us, the evils which have never happened."
~Thomas Jefferson

Do you see what I'm doing here? I'm worrying over what would be the best motto for a fictional program.

I am hardcore baby.

Footnote: As Antique Mommy mentioned in my comments "great minds think alike". She posted an eerily similar post this morning, and it did my heart good to read it. She is an utterly enjoyable read any time, but I especially like it when she writes something that validates me.

23 Comments:

  • At 8:05 PM, Blogger Oh, The Joys said…

    What? Give up ziplocs? How will I parent?

     
  • At 8:34 PM, Blogger Student of Life said…

    I laughed out loud several times reading this post. Not because I thought you were ridiculously funny. Because I could have been reading my own blog. I would kill...KILL...to be one of those carefree people who could live in the moment and not worry about every little thing all the time. The part that got me the most was the paragraph about sleep aids. Even though I rarely sleep enough hours to function, I will not take sleep aids, because of the million and one things that COULD happen when I'm drugged and need to be alert.

    Live without plastic? No way. It's the only reason I didn't click through the link to the original article. Ignorance is bliss, I say. Bliss.

     
  • At 8:47 PM, Blogger slouching mom said…

    Hey. This is me. To a tee.

    Do you remember the movie "sex, lies, and videotape"? When the Andie MacDowell character is talking to her therapist about garbage, and her worry about where it all goes?

    God, did I ever identify with her.

     
  • At 10:52 PM, Blogger flutter said…

    give up ziplocs? how would I suffocate my fiance? errr uh I mean how would I carry my tasty sandwich?

     
  • At 10:56 PM, Blogger margalit said…

    Oh my God, and I was just obsessing with a friend who put tin foil directly over food! I was all "NOOOOO, that's dangerous. Aluminum. Brain damage. Alzheimers..."

    There must be a rehab for chronic worriers, right?

     
  • At 6:18 AM, Blogger Jenn said…

    Please sign me up for the group.

    And you forgot to mention using a crystal for deodorant instead of actual deodorant because a chemical in it could be linked to breast cancer.

    You didn't know that? Wait, misspoke. I think I was like sleeping or dreaming when I heard that.

    Sorry. My bad.

     
  • At 7:24 AM, Anonymous Antique Mommy said…

    Oh good grief - great minds think alike. I just posted on worry not even five minutes ago. Not as eloquently or as humorously as you however...

    And yes, ziplocks are the salvation of modern life.

     
  • At 9:44 AM, Blogger Natalie said…

    I had a disappearing lump too. I'm glad it's gone now. I go between worrying about everything and nothing. It's rather confusing.

     
  • At 10:02 AM, Blogger GardenPinkie said…

    I am THIS CLOSE to emailing a link to this entry to everyone that knows me, so I can say NANNYNANNYBOOBOO to them. I lost the genetic lottery when it came to worrying. My paternal grandmother and my mom are professional worriers. I have, also, honed my craft of worrying into something even the most proficient worrier would admire. As I type, I'm growing a brain tumor and possibly one on my left ovary....for now.
    I'm worried and proud of it babe! Spread the word.
    Kelly
    GardenPinkie

     
  • At 10:24 AM, Blogger WillBlog said…

    Oh no! Now I'm worried that I'm not worried enough!

    (here via Antique Mommy)

     
  • At 10:44 AM, Blogger mcewen said…

    Clearly it would not appear to be a very exclusive club.
    Personally I like to prioritize my worry list - if I have 'some' influence over a particular matter then it is permitted worry list status, if it is something beyond my control, such as earthquakes then it stay off. Currently the list is somewhere in the order of 1359 and counting.
    Cheers great post

     
  • At 11:29 AM, Blogger Mrs. Chicky said…

    That article would have freaked me out! Like in a hide-under-the-bed kinda way.

    As for getting sleep aids, I'm the same way!

     
  • At 11:55 AM, Anonymous Gurukarm said…

    I think what's needed here is an online worry club, whaddyathink? so we can all feed on each other's worries - just in case I don't have enough of my own, ok?

    I have a brother who recently told me he used to sit on the side of his bed every morning and recite "worry worry worry worry" for five minutes, to get it all out of the way at once. Then he gave up even that as a waste of time.

    Clearly, his lack of understanding of the worry gene did not come from our mom's side of the family. (He had a different dad.)

    :-)

     
  • At 12:22 PM, Blogger Melanie said…

    I'm here via Antique Mommy and I love your blog.

    I too am a worrier- you could have been talking about me! I didn't click to read the actual article because I want to stay in my happy place for now. Knowledge is not always power.

    You are hilarious! I will be back!!

     
  • At 4:28 PM, Blogger Rock the Cradle said…

    Oh yeah, those three-in-the-morning-I-can't-sleep-so-I'll -lie-awake-thinking-about-planes-crashing-into-mountains-of-diapers.

    But tough.
    Ziplocs are one evil I will just have to live with.

    And disposable diapers.

    I'll make up for it with my dandy string shopping bag. So there.

    Wait...what do they make the string out of?

     
  • At 5:21 PM, Blogger Andi said…

    When I was 6 six years old my mom I called my mom intot he bathroom to tell her something I had been thinking about while bathing. He reply was "Andrea, if you' don't stop worrying about everything you are going to have gray hair bythe time you are 15." To which I replied "I DON'T WANT TO HAVE GRAY HAIR WHEN I'M 16." That's me, worrywart since about birth. My best friend found the first gray hair on my head when I was...17!

    Lately, Xoloft has helped me deal with some of my "stress and anxiety" (worries!) but I worry about the side effects of Xoloft and what will happen when I stop taking it. It's a no win situation.

     
  • At 7:45 PM, Anonymous JC said…

    From one worrywart to another- Hi, I arrived here via Antique Mommy.
    I had to work night duty the other night and my son had mild asthma and a cough that wouldn't settle. He really should have had the vapouriser on but it was not allowed in case it might catch fire and I wasn't there - but then I worried all night about him! ( He was fine by the way, and he's 14 for goodness sake )
    The worrying never stops!

     
  • At 7:54 PM, Blogger mamatulip said…

    I am a huge, huge, HUGE worrier and I can't read stuff like that because it freaks me out too much.

    Seriously.

     
  • At 10:23 PM, Blogger Seattle Mamacita said…

    phew..its good to know there are people out there like me...i'm hooked on your blog by the way found you via OTJ

     
  • At 11:39 PM, Blogger Christine said…

    Oh, yes, I am a worrier. Especially about health concerns...TOTAL hypochondriac here. I had the poor fortune to contract Medical Student Syndrome (forgive me for repeating myself; I just left a similar post yesterday) due to four years of medical school. I graduated from Med School the month before my son was born, took six months off, then another six...and ultimately never went back I never experienced the internship and residency years which bring you back to reality.

    One learns in med school when you hear hoof beats you NEED to consider zebras; later in your residency you unlearn that and realize that those hoof beats are far more likely to be horses.

    My husband says that when I hear hoof beats I fear unicorns.

    We all have our demons.

     
  • At 11:43 PM, Blogger Christine said…

    I can't TELL you how much my typo above (finger must have slipped off the ".") bothers me. Another one of my demons, I suppose.

    Why is it always easier to spot typos after you have hit the "submit" button? Why isn't "preview" enough?

     
  • At 4:42 AM, Blogger jchevais said…

    Ah the fear articles/emails that you get on a daily basis. Because of them, I no longer nuke food in microwaves nor use saran wrap, etc... etc...

     
  • At 7:56 PM, Blogger kittyhox said…

    I went through a oh-no-phlalates phase when I was pregnant. (My son is one.) I went so far as to remove the lovely adhesive drawer liner I'd just put in all ten of his drawers two days before reading such an article. I screened every toy and teether, etc.

    Oh yes, I know all about worrying. I come from a long line of accomplished worryers. My mother's motto was always, "Worrying must work, because the things I worry about never happen."

    I've gotten a lot better about this over the past few years but I still forbid myself from reading certain kinds of articles, watching documentaries, or anything related to natural disasters, axe murders, or episodes of CSI-type shows. If I can't do something about it, I don't want to know about it!

    Very funny stuff, but I pray you'll have some peace from it and be able to rest!

     

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