Modes of panic

Right now, I’m only in a light panic mode, but I’m sure as May progresses, I’ll move to rather panicked and then frenzied panic mode as my son’s graduation party comes closer.

There’s just so much to do!  Clean the house, cook a bunch of food, organize…

I wouldn’t be sweating it quite so badly if I wasn’t about to go into covering a murder trial. They are very time-consuming. I sit for about eight hours gathering information, then spend the next couple of hours boiling things down to what was most important that day. Throw in some drive time (this one is in Jackson) and I’m getting home pretty late each night.

Then there’s deliberation day, which means I’m sitting around waiting for a jury to make their decision, all the while thinking about what I could be cleaning or cooking or doing at home.

The weird thing is that two years ago, as I was trying to prepare for my other son’s graduation party, I was also covering a murder trial. Odd.

The last party was great, so I’m sure this will be fine also. Still, I can’t seem to convince myself that modes of panic aren’t required. There’s a lot to worry about.

My husband likes to tease me about scheduling my worrying. I’ll admit it — I literally pick certain dates I will start worrying about certain things. He finds it hilarious. I find it my only defense against leading a chaotic life.

I’m also a list-maker. I have lists of food I intend to serve, ingredients I have yet to purchase, things I can do ahead of schedule and stuff that needs to be done the day before or morning of the graduation. I have a master list of my lists. When I feel life is spiraling out of control, it soothes me to make lists. I make some of them very broad and general, but others are very detailed so I can check things off and feel like I’m accomplishing things.

Totally ridiculous, I know, but it works for me.

Even if, by some miracle, I feel like I’ve got a handle on things, I’ll have to worry about the weather. I’m not really scheduled to start worrying about that until later this month and there really isn’t anything I can do about it anyway. But I’ll put worrying about the weather on my list of things that need doing.

Just writing this moved me from light to moderate panic.

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