Editor’s Note: Barb Thompson is on hiatus until the first week of May. Much Ado will be written by Managing Editor Denise Bonura over the next few weeks.

 

I’ve often wondered what it would be like to be completely relaxed. I don’t think my brain can actually comprehend the definition of the word.

Even when I’ve tried yoga and ended the practice with savasana (relaxing each part of your body, one by one), I’ve laid there wondering when it would be over, if other people were able to relax, what time I should make dinner, etc., etc.

Most days, my inner monologue consists of these types of questions: Did I complete this task? Did I forget to turn the lights off or lock the door? Did I miss an article that had to be published this week? Did I forget to assign that event or story to one of my writers?

If you could see the inside of my brain, it would probably look like a whirlwind of activity, a tornado of random thoughts, quotes and anecdotes surrounding a giant core of worry. My stomach is usually in a big knot most of the day, and I can only manage to “breathe” once the paper is put to bed. 

Long hours of editing, writing and brainstorming encompass most of my days, along with anxiety over my son’s well-being, his performance in school and whether or not he’s eating enough.

Even when it’s time for bed, I sometimes lay there for hours worrying about things that haven’t happened yet. Completely neurotic, I know!

You’d think it would end there.

Wrong!

Once I finally fall asleep, things aren’t much different. Vivid dreams fill my nights, many times surrounding the anxieties of not having anything to put in the paper.

Me sitting at a computer, typing frantically, only to look up and see no words on the screen. People staring at me, wondering where the copy is to place on the pages. Sources not answering my questions. Nothing. Just me, panicking, staring at the clock, and watching my deadline approaching faster and faster.

Does anyone else feel like some days they are just trapped in a hamster wheel, spinning their heart out, yet not moving forward?

I’m pretty sure if you look in the dictionary, my picture is next to the term: worrywart. Is there a known cure for this in journalists?

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