Wednesday, February 10, 2016

My Brain Annoys Me, Sometimes.

If you were to take a picture of my brain and process it, I imagine you would see something like this:

Destruction. Chaos. Confusion. Turmoil. Sporadic genius (just kidding). Pixar wouldn't even attempt to produce the Inside Out movie for my brain. Audiences would flee. You would never read "Fun for all generations!" on the blu-ray box.

I think I'm most frustrated with my brain when I am anxious.  I've been a worry wart my whole life, and when I say "my whole life," I mean my whole life.  You can ask my blessed parents about their oppressive experience in raising and nurturing adorable Baby Bekki.  They might even shudder.  I get my worry wart-ness from my dad, so I suppose he's to blame/thank.  When we feel anxious, we can tell based on each other's looks.  My dad's mouth turns into an upside-down horseshoe, and so does mine. When my dad's mouth changes, he suddenly accumulates two more chins, and so do I.   My dad magically acquires worry lines all over his face, and so do I.  And if that's what worrying does to our faces... imagine what it does to our brains! My brain must look like a shriveled up kidney bean...that's been sat on.

That's why I'm writing.  Recently, I've been worrying about a lot of things, and I fear my brain will explode.  Thus, writing... more like recording word-vomit... helps me feel better.  I am worried about a situation that I am facing at school that's actually quite simple, but my brain transforms it into Armageddon.  In the end, I know that the situation will be resolved, and I will handle it like a champion.  I am confident that I possess the skills to act appropriately, wisely, and awesomely.  And yet, I still worry.  Excessively. On the rare occasion that I get to bed early, I think, "Oh goody... an extra thirty minutes to think and worry."

I practice all of the cognitive reframing strategies that I've been taught.  I map out the irrational thoughts and explain why they're faulty.  I recognize that I am catastrophizing and I imagine a certain, beloved, charmingly handsome Silver Fox saying, "Stop it."  But my brain seems to possess a counter-attack plan in order to thwart any attempts towards progress.

This is what a conversation with my brain looks like:
Me: Okay. I've got this. I'm NOT going to worry.
Brain: That sounds boring. I want you to worry as much as possible.
Me: That sounds grueling and pointless.
Brain: Actually, the more you worry and think about the problem, the better you feel!
Me: Oh... well, I guess that kinda makes sense.
Brain: Duh, I'm always right. Now, here are all of the problems you ought to solve right now...
Several days later...
Me: I feel like garbage. You deceived me.
Brain: Yep.

I do feel, though, that I'm the only one who can handle my brain, just as you're the only person who can handle yours.  A friend of mine said that if she had my brain, she would have a great fall like Humpty Dumpty, except all of the king's horses and all of the king's men would not rush to put her back together.  She would just stay broken.

But I won't stay broken.  I know I can do hard things, even if my brain chooses to be an imp of all things irksome.  My simple-Armageddon-situation will pass... just in time for another simple-Armageddon-situation to take its place.  Huzzah for optimism!

I feel better. The end.

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