The first time I became scared of my phone was when my wife was pregnant. In my mind anything could happen and my phone would be the deliverer of the news. Most things did not, except the birth of a healthy boy. A typhoon even canceled classes the day he was born so I did not have to rush out of work to go see my son being born. So, so lucky.
But every time my pocket buzzed I was worried. “Did something happen?” “Are my wife and child okay?” I am from a proud line of worriers, you see. I got a bit better as time went on. But there are still days where the phone buzzes and my mind goes wild.
I did not hear the phone buzz the other day. I was teaching, my phone on my desk. When I was getting ready to go home a short message awaited me saying that our son had tripped and he and my wife were at the dentist. Oh, good. They are not at the hospitaDENIST? Oh, fuck.
I messaged my wife and she replied that they were still waiting. I said I would head out, and I did. When I finally got to the dentist my family was wandering around a nearby drugstore. They were done and had gotten his medicine. He had a little bit less of his right front tooth than when I had last seen him. A little cut on his lip, but okay.
Much better than my wild imagination.
Which is so hard to control. The imagination, that is. It just runs and no telling it to calm down helps. It is a whole “Don't think of an elephant.” situation. It goes deeper and deeper.
But what interests me more about this situation was how not being up to date made my life better. Had I seen the message before my last class of the day, which is already difficult due to exhaustion, I would have had an awful class. There was nothing I could do for my son at the moment. Worrying sure as hell would not heal anything.
Yet I check twitter in the morning. And there are days where that dictates my mood, sometimes for the worse. Just another reminder to be careful about what I let control me.