Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, but only saps today of its strength.
I love this quote. It was in my inbox one day from Goodreads Quote of the Day and it put my feelings into words so succinctly that I saved it because I knew that one day it would inspire me. I incorporate this wisdom into my life every day. I have three kids, I could worry myself to death! Instead, I choose to handle issues the best I can when they come up and leave the rest to God. I have taught my children (young adults now) how to make good decisions and to always do their best. Whether or not those lessons are always followed is another story. I rarely took my parents’ advice. I always had to find out for myself. A lot of kids are like that, including mine, and I am ok with that. I would rather have them try something and fail, or learn a lesson, whether positive or negative, than to be afraid to ever spread their wings because something bad might happen. Someone else in my family, who shall remain nameless, doesn’t share my philosophy. That person gets very frustrated and angry when the younglings’ choices don’t match what that person thinks they should do. I generally take the brunt of it because I encourage them to try.
When my oldest wanted to go to his first concert, I said, “Go!” That other person was more hesitant and worried until said child was home. That person has an ulcer…I don’t. Don’t think that I don’t worry or care what happens to my children, I do, but I prepare them to experience life and then I let them try it in appropriate increments. Sometimes, I think that other person would protect them forever and then expect them to know how to live in the world when they got to a certain age. That person would disagree with me on that, though. As parents, the best we can do is prepare our children as they grow, pray, and leave the results up to God.
I look at it this way: If I actively worried about my children every time they were out of my sight, I would never sleep, I would have an ulcer, I would be completely unproductive, and I would be the crankiest, most controlling witch in the world. My kids sometimes think I am anyway, but I just tell them that it’s my job. When my kids get hurt, and they do, both emotionally and physically, then I am there for them, to help them through whatever challenge life has brought them. If I worried and controlled them too much, then I would be too tired and sick to help them when they need me.
I can’t control that drunk driver on the road or that semi driver who isn’t paying attention. What I can control is what I teach my children. I teach them to be attentive to other drivers, to not be that drunk driver, and to help others when they see a need. I teach them to make good decisions and to take responsibility for those decisions. I will sleep peacefully at night even when my children are out late, or working midnight shift, or driving somewhere they have never been before, or riding a motorcycle over big jumps. Worrying won’t get them there any safer. Preparation will. So, until I get that phone call in the middle of the night, I will sleep peacefully, and trust myself, my children, and God (not necessarily in that order!) to take care of things.
So prepare for life. Live life. Don’t worry about all the “what ifs”. Handle things as they come and sleep peacefully, knowing that God is really the only one who has any control.
A worry free and well rested Julie! 🙂
**The related articles below are all good and deal with worry. Check them out.**
- Reflections (stealingbackhappiness.com)
- Just Look it in the Eye and Slap it! (talktodiana.wordpress.com)
- How to stop Worrying (dansdepression.wordpress.com)
- Three Tips for Better Sleep: Overcome your Insomnia (psychologytoday.com)
- Pre-Departure Thoughts (emoryamst201.wordpress.com)