Every year that goes by brings new stresses and challenges. Stresses are good for us to endure and learn from. Some of these are things I worry about. Often called 'Fears', they are things that would be really terrible to have happen to me, so I think about (worry about) ways to avoid them or prepare for them. I told my son there are two things you can do: pray, and prepare.
Our natural reaction to stressors is 'fight' or 'flight'. Flight from your worries often does not solve them. Prayer can sometimes be used as a 'flight'. I prefer to use it for perspective. Sometimes you just need to calm down and see things from another point of view.
Being prepared is one way to fight. Here is a list of my top worries. Until I feel prepared for them, they will always be worries.
#1. House fire!
I figure that is more common than a tornado.
This worry is really more about losing my security blanket. So much of my identity is in the house. Not just birth certificates and licenses, but also pictures and letters.
We've worked really hard to have a house and keep it up. It is a safe place. Losing your home must be a terrible thing, no matter how. I know lately the tornadoes and flooding and hurricanes have put people in this very situation. I know I'd be the one on the news saying, "We're all just happy to be alive. We can rebuild," all positively, but deep down, the hassle of getting your important documents back, making your insurance pay out, finding a place to sleep, clean clothes, and food would be exhausting and more consuming than the worry over your 'stuff'.
Conversely, I also have an insane curiosity/desire about leaving everything behind to follow a dream. This is the stuff of movies, right? I like to watch shows like "Wild at Heart", movies like "Eat, Pray, Love", and I think about what it would take to drop everything like a missionary and just go and do. To trust that you will be okay simply because you are alive.. I guess if I win the lottery, and I mean huge, I'd eventually become some wandering do-gooder..
So how do I prepare for a natural disaster or accidental displacement?
- Do get homeowner's insurance, or renter's insurance if you rent.
- Keep you personal data safe. Use a lock box, locking file cabinet or desk, or fire-proof safe.
- Make copies of some things and put them in a safe deposit box at a bank.
- Make Emergency plans and a kit. Discuss plans with your family; escape routes, meeting places, phone numbers.
- Keep Extra clothes or maybe medications with a relative or neighbor and/or kept in a bag in the car.
It feels good just to write this out!
#2. Losing a loved one. Especially a child.
So many people are posting missing pictures on facebook. I doubt the actual number of missing people has increased, but rather the exposure to the general public has increased. I know we all die one day, and it is possible that I will have to face this worry, but I just don't want to! I hate to cry in front of people. Mostly, I hate to think of the extreme sense of loss and the hole in my life that I won't ever fill. How do you prepare for a hole in your heart?
- The best thing seems to be to tell your loved ones that you love them as often as possible.
- Do things together.
- Make a legacy. Memories are your legacy to others.
- Care and show it.
#3. Car accidents.
Especially deer and exploding semi tires or things falling out of the back of trucks in front of me. I nearly hit a bush the other day that fell out of the back of a truck.. And being rear-ended.
This is just a safety worry. It's always a good thing to be aware of everything around you when you drive. You can avoid many accidents by staying alert.
No texting or talking on the cell while driving, especially in a manual like my car. :)
And let's not forget that car accidents could come with injuries or worry number 2. Cars are not an investment, no matter how you look at them. If you have one, be responsible.
In conclusion, I told my oldest it was the parent's job to worry so the kids don't have to! That's the way it should be. How many times have you heard "you let me worry about that" coming from a parent?