I am exhausted, and it’s still early.

Last night started off with me going to bed anxious and not able to sleep.  Then came the knock on the door.  “Mom, I threw up in the bathroom.”  Hey, in the bathroom, no big deal right?  Well, the toilet lid was in the down position and my poor child either did not notice or didn’t have enough time to open it.  I will spare you further details of my middle of the night fun.

This morning I awoke full of anxiety.  Somehow my brain got stuck in worst case scenario mode.  Every time I gave a situation to God, telling Him that I have no control over any of the issues, and I want Him to take care of it, I was imagining another series of trauma filled events.  I seem to have a creative brain that can spin a soap opera-worthy drama out of even the smallest things.  And all seem plausible to me.  The rest of the world may view them as crazy, but once I start to thing up these things they seem more likely than any normal positive outcome.

This was the state of mind I was in as I entered the dentist office.  However, from the receptionist, to the dental hygienist, to the dentist, everyone seemed pre-disposed to put my mind at ease.  Nope, my kids do not all have perfect sparkling teeth.  But there was no condemnation.  Advice and suggestions, yes.  Follow up appointments for two of my children, yes.  But everything was made easy and fully explained.  The boys both had good experiences and left the office happy.  And then there was Clara. You take your child in to their first dentist appointment, and well, you expect crying, some stubbornness.  I was surprised that Clara was excited about going to the dentist, but she is my child who says “yes, I want to go to the ER” when I use the threat “Do you want to go to the emergency room?”  to try to stop dramatics over small hurts.  She seems to block out memories of shots with doctors and only remember that they are people who pay a lot of attention to her and want to know all that she has to say.  A dentist is just another kind of doctor.  So I got it, but how would she really feel about someone poking around in her mouth.  This dentist was prepared for a little diva.  Flower sunglasses to protect little eyes from the bright light.  A stuffed duck to hold onto.  She was right at home.  While I was off looking at x-rays of the boys mouths, she was in her chair having the time of her life apparently.  Charming the hygienist.  No fear and total compliance.  And she has those perfect sparkling teeth.  Not only clean, but apparently perfectly spaced.  She didn’t just manage no problems, the dentist and hygienist were marveling over her little teeth and attitude.  I can’t say that I’m surprised that she’s the one with the healthiest teeth, and I can’t take credit for it.  While the boys whine about brushing, Clara fusses and insists that her teeth get brushed regularly.  All in all there was nothing to fear.

After the dentist we got home, and promptly went back out.  After my middle of the night joys, I didn’t want to see what we had for dinner again.  Just sayin’.  I took the kids out to lunch.  On the way home I drove by my polling place.  It looked quiet.  So we went in and voted.  I brought in my cheat sheet and was copying my answers onto the ballot, all while trying to wrangle my children.  And suddenly I noticed that I mis-marked my ballot.  The shame, the horror.  I meekly backed out of the booth, offending ballot in hand and had to admit that I had messed up my vote.  No shame, no condemnation.  Just friendly smiles and a fresh new ballot in return for my ripped up, messed up one.  I filled out my new ballot, double and triple checking before marking a circle, and then checking once more before putting my ballot in the machine.

We got home and Xavier asked to be allowed to shovel the driveway.  Yep, I’ll let you take care of that child.

So my day is nearly over, and nothing terrible has happened.  All my worry from the morning was for naught.  Could someone please send the memo to my brain that all that worry and worst-case scenario projecting only raised my blood pressure in unhealthy ways. I try reminding it, but it doesn’t listen to me.

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