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What, Me Worry?

In the middle of the night
Miss Clavel turned on her light
and said, "Something is not right!"
From  Ludwig Bemelmans' classic picture book MADELINE

On November 11 Dr. Jennifer Howard, @DrJennifer, and I were in a twitter-sation about worry.  She asked the simple question why worry, it seemed from that simple question that worry is somehow a bad thing?  Excessive worry is a bad thing.  Worry that keeps you from enjoying life is a bad thing.  Most of what we worry about is never as bad as our worry. But worry does have a place.

Why is it that we are so uncomfortable with stronger, (I hate the phrase negative emotions), emotions?  We seem to want to ignore them in the hopes they will go away instead of learning how to use them, control them so they don't control us, to treat them as the tools they are.  Worry is just a tool.

I contend that there is a positive aspect to worry; maybe if we changed worry's name to intuition.  Dr. Carl  Jung called people who used intuition as acting on sheer intensity of perception. That is exactly what we mothers do when we have those AHA moments, when we just know something is wrong.  Worry is not rational but I say it is relational.  Who do we worry about the most; those people we know and love.  Thomas Merton discussed variations of intuition in a series of essays.  In one he describes aesthetic intuition as seeing the object's real spirituality.  Don't we as mothers see the real in our children, the real in the world and the real of their reactions?
Mr.Rochester to Jane just before her leaving for Ireland: is as if I had a string somewhere under my left ribs, tightly and inextricably knotted to a similar string situated in the corresponding quarter of your little frame. And if that boisterous channel, and two hundred miles or so of land some broad between us, I am afraid that cord of communion will be snapt; and then I've a nervous notion I should take to bleeding inwardlyCharlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre
And like that cord, isn't there also a cord under our left ribs to each of our children?   For me worry/intuition is a tool we use to keep our children from harm.  Young moms will tell you they feel, just know, when their babies are ill, or getting into something they shouldn't.  Moms have feelings about what is going on in their children's live, they just know; and by 'knowing" they can sense danger ahead and be prepared for it.

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