We’re driving home from the lake. It’s dark and about 10 p.m. The trip is a little longer than I’d like – a good hour and 15 minutes. I have nothing to do but think and in these cases thinking is not good.
An oncoming car hits us dead on and at an angle that gravity takes over and we begin flipping upside down. Rolling over and over, I squeeze Joe’s hand and the truck finally stops upside down in the nearby ditch. I look over and Joe is unconscious. I scream out for help and begin to sob.
My mind takes me back to reality and to Joe driving. I’m sitting in the passenger seat engulfed in my horrific thoughts that keep running through my mind.
See, that scenario certainly isn’t real and hopefully never will be, but I have a very psychotic mind that daydreams the most horrific scenarios. Scenarios that include close family members dead on the side of the road, friends coming down with unknown diseases or imagining my own treacherous death.
I’ve never understood why my mind goes to these places when I daydream. It’s as if I hold a pessimistic view point on life or that I’m always aware that my world could change in a matter of a second. I’d like to say the latter is more probable, but I’m not the most optimistic person.
Take for instance last weekend. Things really weren’t working out the way I would have liked for my birthday. I spent my day with three very important people in my life, but others missed out that I would have liked to have been around. With those missing people and the too long wait at the Cheesecake Factory, I turned into Crazy Carla. I sat at dinner pouting and in near tears because things weren’t working out the way I would have liked them. Most people would have said tough shit, but I was only looking at what was going wrong instead of looking at the positive things that were going right. Sure, I didn’t get the dinner I would have liked, but what the dinner lacked the concert and company made up for drastically. My pessimistic side flourished that night.
The mind is quite a fascinating thing and I’ll never understand my own. Those quite moments where my mind wonders can be a very scary place. Part of me thinks I have those awful thoughts because I’ve been riding on a pretty good high for the last few years. There hasn’t been a death in our immediate family since my grandmother died over 10 years ago. I’ve had some good accomplishments lately that make me appreciate this life like graduating college and finding a steady job. I have Joe by my side, a loving, supportive family and good friends. So it’s inevitable that my world will eventually become topsy-turvy and I’ll be looking to get off that carnival ride as fast as possible.
Nothing is a guarantee and I’d have to say that it’s part of why my thoughts aren’t always light and optimistic. The world can be a big, scary place. When those daydreams take over, I work my way out of it by talking to Joe and finding something lighthearted to discuss. He knows when I get that daydream going because I’ll immediately say, “Tell me a funny story.” That long drive home from the lake can easily become a nightmare, but one little switch and I’m talking about future plans and good opportunities. I guess it could be as simple as a little switch that goes off. I wish it was that easy all the time though.
I have a quote that I keep at my desk at work that seems to help when my pessimism starts to show.
“A positive thinker sees an opportunity in every difficulty.”
I’m unsure who said it, but it sticks with me when I’m lost and looking for some optimism.
Here’s to working out those pessimistic thoughts and exploring an optimism worth showing the world. Have an awesome Tuesday, ya’ll!