When I had cancer, I had lots of time and reasons why I could worry. There were lots of people who told me how much they were worried about me. I mean, who can blame everyone for worrying? Everything is new with cancer. It's the unknown that drives you crazy. Personally, I had to make a special effort to keep busy and try to limit just how much time I had to myself. I didn't want free time that would allow me to think too much. I told myself, and the people around me, "Worry is wasted energy."
At a time when there was so much going on in my life, I decided that I would rather spend my energy on something productive, like getting through all the cancer treatments.
Even now, during the "new normal" stage in my life, there are still plenty of opportunities to worry. There are still unknowns, especially with the potential of a cancer recurrence. But while the thought occurs to me from time to time, I have to keep it in check or risk wasting the life I have because I'm worrying about losing that life. I have to be diligent about applying my "Worry is wasted energy" mantra.
I wrote the following poem for a friend who could have earned an A+ for her ability to worry. Maybe it can help you too.
Worrydom is a kingdom
That nobody wants to reign.
It’s full of supposition
And its self-inflicted pain.
It’s a place you may visit
When you don’t know what to do.
But understand its dangers;
There’s nothing good for you.
Your burdens may seem many
And cause stress upon your mind.
But there’s light in the darkness
And light’s what you have to find.
Don’t think about tomorrow.
Focus solely on today.
An inner peace will fill you
And you’ll see a brighter way.
Your trip uphill may seem long
And feel hard to reach the top.
But when your burden’s lighter
You won’t really need to stop.
Worry can only hurt you;
To yourself you must be kind.
Look forward to your future;
Leave Worrydom far behind.
Over 30-years of writing experience, over five years as a cancer survivor, and a lifetime purveyor of wit and laughter.