Wednesday 1 August 2012

Keeping the Demons at Bay

Yesterday, I wrote about those disaster scenarios that have a way of poisoning our imaginations.  Today, I've been thinking about some strategies that I use to keep the demons at bay, especially now, when an trip to the emergency room with Nicholas is fresh in my mind.  Nick is 23 now and he's had lots of close calls, each one fodder for nighttime or daytime flights of fancy to the dark side.  When I begin to feel fear and dread taking over from confidence and optimism, here is what I do.

I dance.  And dance for me is perfect because it's joyful, compelling (you have to concentrate on what your feet are doing), and it feeds the fantasy that I am younger and enjoying a nightclubbing lifestyle (truly!).  I'm not a trained dancer, so I take zumba, hip hop and latin dancing for enthusiasts who are not very serious about technique.  I just turn up the volume and jump around.

For me, dancing works to keep me happy if Nicholas and my Mum are alright and there are no immediate threats to their life and limb.  If I'm dealing with an emergency, there is only one thing that works to calm me down - it's being with them.  What I find intolerable is to know that someone I love is in real danger and I am not there.  Perhaps that's why waiting for surgery to be over is so difficult.  I would be in the operating theatre if I could - just to hold the hand of the person I love.

What are your strategies to keep calm when you know someone you love and care for is vulnerable?  Do you sew?  Read? Bake? Play an instrument?  Or, do you dance like me?

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