You come home and the dog knocked a bag of chips on the ground and tore it open. You almost fall on the slippery tile floor as you open the refrigerator to put away the cheese and vegetables you just bought. You notice that the 2 liter bottle of soda sitting in the refrigerator that your live in’s been drinking is empty but it’s been put back. You feel a minor pang of annoyance, Why do you have to be the one to clean up?
You sit down and turn to the news channel. Any news channel. The news is so stressful and awful you want to tune it out. If just for a moment. But can you? The answer is, yes and no. If you want to drift off to sleep you can. But as long as you are awake in the real world, you just can’t. We are all connected in some way. We can feel and we can empathize. We all feel human suffering, grief, loss, fear, joy, worry, stress.
We worry about our children, grown or small. If they are still children, we worry about what this world will be like when they are adults. Will life be less stressful for them?
We worry about our spouses or significant others, husbands, wives, girlfriends, boyfriends, our mates. Will they stay with us for a while? Will we be protected, cared for, and loved? If we are alone, we worry about being alone, perhaps. Or, we might be relieved that we are alone, if even for a moment or a lifetime.
We worry about our jobs, homes, living situations.
Stress is an after effect of worry. We have stress every day of our lives. Stress is a way of life. Part of this happens because we don’t live in a bubble. We live in the real world.
How can we cope with so much stress and stay healthy, and not buckle under a continuing pile of stress? We feel like stress continues to pile up. How do we get rid of it? We don’t but we find ways to cope. Exercise, sleep, eating the right foods, playing with the dog or cat, leaning over and kissing our lovers, tucking our little ones into bed. Sitting alone with a glass of wine and cheese, savoring their flavors and relishing the time alone. Remembering what makes us happy, what makes us smile and brings us tears of joy, not tears of sorrow.
Yet, staying with the moment, and being aware of what’s around us is essential. Finding a way of just hanging in there. And to keep on going.
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