I got issues, man. A lot. A whole fucking lot. The futhermucking light on my ceiling fan will not stay at a constant 60 watts. I'm diabetic and afraid of needles. I worry too much. I can't sleep at night. When I do sleep at night, it's like HorrorVision in my head. I'm always walking a tightrope between anger and sadness. I can't be around most people because I'm afraid of what happens if I lose control. And I have to constantly occupy my brain, or it revolts - you either give that fucker something to do or he finds something to do. Now at least one of these things I can do something about. No, it's not the fucking light bulb - that thing is cursed or inhabited by a grumpy tech spirit that my cybershamanic diplomacy just can't assuage. I worry too much. I worry too much because I'm a "What if?" thinker. I do it because people depend on me. They respect my opinion, and they value my perspective. And I'm a sucker for someone in need. I tilt at windmills. It's just who I am. This worrying is part nature, and part nurture. I did security work for years, including working as a bouncer, and where I grew up if you didn't think about who was going to beat your ass meant you'd get your ass beat. Add that to an imagination that is...vivid and you can see where this goes. I'm not complaining (too much), because let's be honest - asking, "What If?" means I've got a plan A, B, C, D, E, - you get the fucking idea. That's how I operate. I expect the first couple to fail and have built in backups and fail safes. But this comes with a price. A old boss put it like this "When you're always prepared - you're always paranoid." He was an old cop, and I loved that man like he was blood. Taught me everything I know about security and law enforcement procedures. Anyways, that phrase has stuck with me a long time, and I've come to shorten it to "Preparanoid." (a obvious portmanteau). Yesterday, I got shitty news. I was turned down by Uncle Sam for the third time because (and I'm paraphrasing here because if I think about it too much I'll need to go destress) "You're issues aren't severe enough! You've never even been hospitalized." Well, no shit! You don't say? Because I've had an intensely loyal and loving set of family and friends, I suddenly don't need as much help as anyone else? Pal, I'm Bi-Polar, ain't nothing I can do about that - my brain chemistry is so fucked it's like Philip K. Dick got into my head before I was even born and said, "Hey, let's just dump this whole beaker of Dr. Hofmann's brew in here. Baby high on acid - that shit will be hilarious." Of course, I don't really hallucinate, not in the traditional sense. No, my brain tells itself stories. The same thing that makes me good at planning, adapting, and overcoming can also leave me paralyzed with fear for those I care about. "If they go out in this weather they could have a wreck." "If L.A. rides the buses someone could try to hurt her." I've learned to deal with the fear over the years by allowing - no, demanding - myself to hope. I am a creature of infinite hope and optimism, but I'm also a pessimist. I see the worst, because if you know the worst, you can plan for it, and then take what you get in stride all the while hoping for the best. Anyways, I kept hoping that for once, I'd be able to do things the easy way. But nope. My issues are "mild." Let me give you an example of what my brain can come up with if left to its own devices:
Me: Man, I haven't heard from my brother in a while. I hope he's okay.
Brain: Yeah, he's probably okay. You know how he is.
Me: Thanks. Brian!...I mean, Brain. Sorry.
Imagination: What? No! That's not possible he just told you about that thing. You know? That thing! With the guy! The thing with the guy. What if it happened?
Me: Shit. The Thing.
Brain: Shit. With the guy.
Logical Plan-y Me: DON'T LISTEN TO HIM! HE'S A FUCKING LIAR. It's what he does! He tells stories and comes up with gaming stuff! I mean he does help me plan and all...But no! He's lying! Don't listen to him.
Imagination: That's why you should listen to me! I know things...and stuff. Ignore the Vulcan Boy Scout - he's useless unless you need a nerve-pinch, or you've got a seven-year itch, or you lost your wallet, or whatever. Seriously...what if it happened? CALL HIM!
Brain: CALL HIM! WE'RE DOOMED! DOOMEDDDD!!!!
Me: Oh, god, no. Oh, god. We're doomed! I'm calling him. [no answer]. It's okay. I'll just wait an hour or so and call him again...
And that's how I stayed awake for nearly three days straight. I couldn't get a hold of my brother so I couldn't sleep because I kept coming up with possible reasons why I hadn't heard from him. It's a fucking magic trick, see? I disappeared my sleep. So you know what? I'm going to try letting go. I can't control everything. So yeah, I'm gonna try to let go - even if only a little - who knows if it'll work. Besides, I can't do anything about the fucking light bulb. [Flash] [Burble Luminescently] It's like Lucifer in Edison-Thought Form. Yeah it's the bringer of light and all - but that light drives me nuts. So this is me letting go, just a little. Maybe tomorrow I'll do it a bit more and see where that takes me. I'm going to go sleep now.