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Slaying the Worry Dragon

13 Feb

I wasn’t sure how I felt about calling Worry a Dragon. It seems kind of inappropriate and someone might laugh because there is some type of scandalous context I’m missing. Suddenly, everyone’s snickering, laughing at me behind my back. I lose my credibility and they never visit my blog again. My blunder spreads through the book world and I start to cultivate a bit of a reputation. No one takes me seriously and all my lifelong dreams and pursuits evaporate into one misguided attempt at a title, which was only ever formulated in the hopes of making you all feel better about worrying. With my reputation a disgrace, my friends and family leave me, and I end up living in a paddleboat in the middle of a river. I can’t swim.

*takes a deep breath*

If you’re still with me… Welcome. And I think you can see how that ridiculous paragraph translates rather well into my topic. Worrying.

I battle Worry how I imagine I would slay a dragon.

I’d put on all the gear, sharpen my blade, and chant internally that I can do this. Nothing like a little positive thinking.

But then when I finally find the dragon’s lair, I imagine my battling going something like this:

I hold out my sword with my aching arm (well out of reach of the dragon, since I can’t actually see the dragon yet).

I didn’t train hard enough for this. I had no idea how heavy a sword could get. I’m already tired, thinking about taking a nap.

The dragon roars, and I see fire sizzle out of the cave entrance. The heat snaps me out of my daydream.

I secure my ridiculously heavy metal helmet. It has a facemask type thing, which makes it so I can’t really see, because isn’t that always how it goes?

It looks like this is it. The creature roars again, still out of sight.

The Big Battle.

The moment I show the dragon, I’m the boss.

So what do I do?

I peer somewhere off into the distance, not focusing on the cave, and I swing the sword around, hoping, praying, desperately wishing, that I’ll beat the dragon.

And that’s kind of how I slay Worry. Flailing and without a true plan of attack. In fact, I’m destined to lose.

Worry can be as big as any dragon. And it’s just as dangerous.

I am a Champion Worrier. The only part that sucks is that I don’t really get anything for the title, and I have rather long, tedious conversations in my head like I showed up above in the first paragraph.

I dwell. I cry out internally. I throw myself down on the ground in defeat (only in my head, of course. I never throw tantrums. *coughs*).

If I had my choice, I’d curl up into a ball and hide in the corner with a fuzzy blanket and music for comfort. I’d plug my ears and yell, “I can’t hear you!”

Not because I’m rude. I have a rather guilty conscience. If I do something and feel badly about it, I dwell and well, worry… for hours and hours.

I don’t plug my ears because I don’t want to hear you. I do it out self-preservation. As I think we all do at times when we’ve reached our max.

One more word from someone and we’re going to explode. We plug our ears for their own good. Of course, they don’t realize it. Ridiculous peeps.

We’re flailing and struggling, and there’s so much ANGST. I hate calling it that because I wasn’t very good at being a teenager when I was an actual teenager. But that’s really the only emotion to define the feeling.

It’s a sense of desperation, a sense of being misunderstood, a sense of yearning to be more than ourselves.

I experience these things even in adulthood, and it makes me a little irritable because nobody warned me.

All I wanted to do was grow up. Then I got here and it was like… Really? This is it?

There are great things about adulthood, but one thing that isn’t great is all the Worry.

I can’t stem the what-ifs.

All of a sudden, randomly at one point in the day, my heart stops. I’m like… I’m wearing a pink shirt. OMG. I read on Twitter that wearing a pink shirt means I hate people with blue eyes. OMG. A major news network just tweeted that if I’m wearing pink I hate people with blue eyes. OMG. Everyone at my office has blue eyes. They’re all staring at me. OMG. I’m going to get fired. OMG. They just passed a law that hating people with blue eyes is illegal. OMG. OMG. OMG.

*panic flail*

And of course, the above is really dramatic. The probability of this ever happening is slight. But this is how the Worry Dragon strikes. It starts with something simple, and then it builds and builds, until I want to scream or cry or curl up in a little ball.

There are so many things we have to patrol now. So many things we have to know to protect ourselves. I can’t help but panic at the sheer vastness. Never have we had to be so accountable for our words and actions.

Everything we set free on the internet, everything we say… It’s all there forever. A stain on us, even if what we said never had any premeditated negative connotations.

This can drive someone like me bananas.

And what’s my plan of attack? Flailing with an imaginary sword I’m not even properly equipped to handle.

The only way I can sometimes move past these mind-numbing internal monologues is to tell people. To free them into the world. Usually in person, because I don’t want a lot of this on record.

Once I’ve released them into the wild, for the first time, I can laugh. Laughter is really the only way to battle back the Worry Dragon.

Which is why I try to bring humor into this blog (you’ll note I qualified that with ‘try’).

I had a really tough day yesterday. I felt like I was falling into a pit of Worry.

The interesting/sad part is that the things that sweep me away into the Worry Sea? None of them have ever happened. Yes, several bad things happened in 2012. Horrible things. 2012 was not a good year for my family. But those things that happened? I never saw them coming.

I never worried over them. I worried about 800,000 other things that didn’t happen.

The Dragon won. Damn, Dragon. I will attack you with my lacking sword!

What do you guys think? Can you relate to all the senseless worry? Some people (like my husband, who I’m jealous of) just seem to strut through their life, never letting anything bother them (I’m not sure I believe this, but by all accounts he swears he rarely worries about things he can’t control).

I think some of us are more sensitive.

That sensitivity has the capacity for great things. But that sensitivity also has consequences, as does anything in life.

Do you have any techniques for battling the Worry Dragon?

A lot of the time I just want to take a deep breath and relax! But my overactive imagination always soars again to see another day. Instead of flying over the danger, I always plummet right into the dragon.

I would have made a horrible knight. Maybe an okay damsel. But dang it, I’d rather be the knight!

Kinley Baker (@kinleybaker)

Is Adult Tantrum Throwing Okay? (Video)

1 Feb

The comments on Wednesday’s post were fantastic. I now view tantrum throwing through a perspective I never before imagined. Some of you might still be wondering…

Is adult tantrum throwing okay?

The answer is: YES.

VIDEO PROOF:

(You might want to watch this short fifteen second clip several times to get the full impact of the awesome-ness.)

Disclaimer: Please consult a doctor (I am not a doctor) before attempting to mimic this degree of tantrum throwing. This is a very physical, athletic rendition, and I don’t want anyone to hurt themselves.

Really, this is fantastic. I just want to get up and THROW my arms up in the arm. Get my knees up! Maybe a mini half high-kick. YELL to really show the passion. And toss that pen around like we really mean it.

Man, I love that video.

FULL BODY FLAIL.

Watching makes me want to get up and work my angst out. I need some rap music to set a beat to this new dance.

ARGHHH!

RAWRRR! (I feel this might be the wrong sound effect)

*add lyrics about hard times*

END SONG.

When I saw this moment on television, I knew I had to try to find the clip on YouTube. This was literally only a few days after I wrote the tantrum post. It was meant to be.

I watch this video over and over and it only gets better.

Not only is throwing a fit okay, it’s encouraged. In a sport that boasts of strength and perseverance… everybody’s doing it.

Okay, not everyone. But one person. And that’s enough for me.

In honor of the Super Bowl on Sunday, GO TEAM (Not any specific team, despite the content of the video).

And get that angst on, champs. Knees up. Arms out. I don’t want to see it unless you really mean it!

What do you think? Is adult tantrum throwing okay? Did I convince you? What if I posted a video of me doing the same thing, but with a smile?

I get angry and then I laugh. Then I say, stop making me laugh! I’m trying to act upset.

***

Come back Monday to meet the very first blog mascot. His name may or may not be Prickly. When you meet him, it will all make sense. Or it won’t.

Have a great weekend! Thank you so much for your support this first week of blogging. 🙂

-Kinley Baker (@kinleybaker)

Confessions of a Tantrum Thrower: Day One

30 Jan

(Prefunk Background: When I went to school we called partying before an event prefunking. I have no idea why, or at least, I didn’t until I looked online five minutes ago. But sometimes I will want to preface posts. So this will be called the prefunk. You’re asking why… I have no answer.)

Onto the…

Prefunk (As a side note, I keep typing that VERY WRONG… I even Googled it wrong, and in case anyone looking at my browser history is wondering… that was an accident.):

You’ll notice there is no picture to this post. That is because I imagined a conversation in which I would ask for my husband’s help. I thought it would go something like this:

Me: Will you pretend to throw a tantrum so I can take a picture?
Husband: No.
Me: Will you take a picture of me pretending to throw a tantrum?
Husband: No.

Oh *SNAP!*

Then the conversation actually went like this…

Me: Will you pretend to throw a tantrum so I can take a picture?
Husband: No.
Me: Will you take a picture of me pretending to throw a tantrum?
Husband: No.

So I win! But I also lose… because there is no picture. So use your imagination.

*STOMPS FOOT*… *LOOKS PETULANT*

The actual blog (Ya’ll are like… finally):

***

Confessions of a Tantrum Thrower Day: Day One

I lied to you gals and guys. In this very recent post, in fact. In my post about world peace, I wrote these words:

“When you just want to sink down on the floor like you haven’t since you were four and throwing a tantrum. All energy melted from your bones and defeat triumphing…”

I have a confession.

I still throw tantrums.

There, I said it.

In my first post I insinuated that I’m mature and adult, and that’s just a big, huge lie. In fact, the last time I melted to the floor in a display of major tantrum-dom I was twenty-something and it was three weeks ago.

I don’t know why exactly that I can’t express myself in a healthy way. I just never learned to cope, and it comes out in foot stomps and floor melting.

I KNOW. It’s really ridiculous and destroys my credibility. But I felt like a big liar as soon as I posted that, and I didn’t think my last post was a good place for this confession.

Confessing I still throw tantrums probably drains my credibility. But when I went through Kristen Lamb’s blogging class and decided to figure out who I am, I promised myself I wouldn’t lie or exaggerate for the sake of this blog.

Now, occasionally something might slip through on accident. For the most part, I promise to be honest with you, readers. You’re all I have. *cues violins*

But seriously, I’m honored you read and visit. I won’t throw tantrums on the blog, or at least, I’ll try not to…

Why? Because tantrums are private. Obviously.

And I leave those strictly for my husband. He’s so lucky. I know you’re all thinking that. I tell him that EVERY DAY.

Kidding. Most days I just look at him and think… Why are you still here? Haaa. That reveals so much more about me than I ever wanted you to know. *melts down to the floor*

Anyway, so I throw tantrums in real life. Yep. I don’t even have an interactive question to add to that.

Tune in Friday to see why tantrum throwing is okay. No really, I have proof. I dare you not to laugh at the video I have planned. I dare you!

And if you find yourself relating to this post, I wouldn’t mind you admitting so in the comments. You know, so I don’t feel like a loser.

Or nod along in silence. You don’t have to make any confessions out loud right now. It might be too soon. Just remember, we’re in this together.

No pressure… Just saying. 🙂

-Kinley Baker (@kinleybaker)