I have work fear. I have a few tasks lying ahead of me that I don’t fully know how to accomplish and I fear I’m going to mess things up and projects that have the potential to be great will just fizzle out like damp squibs.

I’ve been in this position before, and while I experience feelings of mild panic and fear in the before, after I get to feel proud of myself for staying the path and getting through. And the time helps – the deadline actually helps, because things will roll around and I’ll have to face them and so I will.

Part of me feels like I want an undisturbed life that can drift like a boat in the sunshine, gliding across the mirrored surface of a calm lake, everything going to plan. Part of me rails against the Baby Elephant that charges out of nowhere are knocks me off my feet and off the path I’d planned for. There’s a spark though, one that appreciates being knocked out of potential ruts. There’s a spark of determined excitement that revels in challenges, that never wanted a peaceful water life. A sparked-up fiery self that’s ready to take on the world, take on all challengers and beat them all.

I don’t know though. I’ve still got a panicky feeling; creeping fear and guilt spiders and all that stuff. I’m not up to snuff – it’s all just bravado, I’m just a small girl wearing clothes too big for me, standing on the shoulders of another self, dressed up in the suit of a father I never had; dressed up in the bravado of the father I did get to have, walking an edge of terror with “you’re fine, you’re fine, you’re fine” ringing in my ears as a mantra to keep my balance.

Then when it’s all passed, I guess I’ll revel a bit in how cool that success roll was.

If it’s not a super-success, then I’ll pack it away in a box. It wasn’t my fault anyway – I was put in an impossible position.

Recently in school there’s been a lot of focus on resilience. In my department we’re particularly focused on resilience in the face of problem solving, and on how the fear of failure paralyses so many students; rather than risk being wrong, they’ll ensure a mark of zero by not answering at all. I keep thinking of that phrase about hell. You know the one: “When you’re going through hell, keep going” .

It’s not like this is hell. I’m just worried. I feel like I don’t have enough time to accomplish everything that I’ve committed to:

  • Running is in my plans and it helps my sanity
  • I have no Not Funny, Just True pictures in the bank, so I need to complete the one I started last night by Friday.
  • Children need to be fed, we need to be fed.
  • It’s important to get enough sleep.
  • I don’t want to fall behind on correcting.
  • YS projects need to be assessed by Wednesday at 5pm and I don’t know what to put in them.
  • I need to register the robotics team.
  • I need to have a space for robotics class and I don’t know how to pre-plan for that.
  • I don’t really know what I’m doing when it comes to robotics class.
  • I don’t know how to get the payment for the registration fee.
  • I still have to pay for the papers – this is not time sensitive but it just popped into my head.
  • TY Physics classes are all over the shop.
  • I’ve committed to helping a student in some of my free classes with her UKCAT exams. I don’t know what these involve, and I kind of resent losing first class this morning because it’s my relaxed morning to bring the children to school and then mosey on over to school.
  • I’ve stopped looking at my loops document out of fear – if I actually looked through it, it probably wouldn’t be that bad.
  • I feel guilty for having come off the numeracy committee, even though I have no bandwidth for doing something extra right now.
  • I’ve agreed to bake a cake for Friday.
  • Friday is like this intense focus point where so many things are due: cake, picture, packing for my parents’ house.
  • Oh yeah, that was only three things.
  • This house feels like it’s falling apart around my ears, and all I want is a timeframe for the next stage of what’s happening regarding new house.

Anyway. That felt kind of good, just to vomit up all my fears and stress onto the page.

I’m fine, I’m fine.

So are you.