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Worries, Big and Small, Silly or Real

Notebook, 2016
Notebook, 2016

I’m worried. About… things.

I’m worried about work. Overall, my workload has been getting lighter and lighter for the past year or so. In my line of business, it doesn’t translate into clocking out early or leisurely paid hours watching the world go by, but into making frantic attempts to market my services and accepting smaller, lower paying jobs. Come on, phone, buzz! Someone, please, assign me something! New, reliable clients, fall in love with my skills!

I’m worried the cost of living is getting higher and higher and I’m being priced out of life’s little luxuries. I’m worried about my future—as a freelancer, I’m on my own. It’s not just about the money, I’m also worrying I’m losing my purpose. Words are my passion, my life. I don’t know what else to do. I don’t have a plan B career option, which is apparently a sin because I should know how to adapt to the market and follow trends (which I would totally do if I knew what they were in the first place…).

I’m worried about not being a good mother—nothing new here. Will Mark ever go pee without claiming a star sticker afterwards? Will the Dollar Store ever run out of cheap stickers? Did my ingenious potty-training system damaged him for life? I sure hope he won’t demand a glittery sticker as a reward from his bossfor each career milestone. Does he remember all the times I was angry, lacked patience, all the times I didn’t understand him or was unfair? Why do other kids keep on scratching him at school? Does he like the food I cook him? Does he like me?

I’m worried about Feng and I. I’m worried that he takes me for granted, that holding hands during a short car ride is now the equivalent of a torrid night of sex and that our only common goal is Mark. Does he still find me desirable? I worry about ended up alone—would I be good enough to meet someone else? How would I navigate the dating scene at thirty considering I didn’t have a clue about flirting with strangers when I was in my teens?

I’m worry about my mum, she is working too much. I worry about my dad who probably doesn’t get the success he deserves as an artist. I’m worry about my brother and sister—will they find their niche in a tough job market? They can’t be students forever.

I’m worried about the world. Every time I turn the TV on, I see Donald Trump’s orange face and people being hateful, narrow-minded, spiteful. I see the Eiffel Tower lit up in various colours in tribute to new, innocent victims for each new terrorist attacks and I’m worried this is becoming the new normal. I worry that personal freedom is being jeopardized, that the crazies are winning the war.

I’m worried that there isn’t more to life than this, a steady routine of tasks, chores, disappointment and duties. I’m worried that I’m too old and reasonable to dream of a better life—the adventurous mindset is for single twenty-something, not 33 year-old married woman with a kid.

I’m worried that I spend too much energy looking strong and being helpful and that no one ever suspects I might not have a clue.

I’m worried that no one will catch me if I fall.

I’m worried I can’t fix everything.

I’m worried that my worries are so mundane that they are hardly worth mentioning. Some people have to face real struggles and here I am, with my first-world dilemmas.

I can’t help it, this is the way I was wired. I don’t have the relentless optimism North Americans find in their breakfast cereals.

When he is worried, Feng sulks or blames the entire world. I write or escape—often literally. I head out, take walks, as if my legs were powering my brain and as if the faster I walked, the more inspired I would be.

Alright, that’s it. I’m finishing this can of Coke, aka a dose of pure American optimism and I’m done whining.

Time to take control and stop being negative.

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