I don’t hide under the bed quaking, but at any one time there can be at least one thread of fear running through my head. Some come from the media and their faithful acolytes on social media. Some come from the experiences of others. Some just crop up randomly on their own. Some last seconds, some can build up until I have to talk myself down. The early hours of the morning is the time most of them drift up, although some are triggered by what I am doing, or unexpected noises.
Will my brakes fail on this hill, will I crash through the barrier and bounce into the ravine 500 feet below?
Why hasn’t X (friend, relative, or person of interest), responded to my message / email / whatsapp? Dead? Sick? Pissed off with me and will never be in touch again?
Was that creak at 2 am a door opening, or the first sign the house is falling down? Will I survive its collapse, but be buried in the rubble to suffocate slowly in excruciating pain?
Will I be burgled? Mugged? Attacked? Beaten-up? Shot? Maimed? Killed? Acid thrown in my face?
Will I try to draw cash and find my bank account has been frozen or emptied? Will I lose my house, be unable to buy food, have to kill my pets before they starve to death so I can boil their bones to make up soup?
Will I be alone forever, die alone and be eaten by said pets because no-one even notices? Will I fall downstairs, break my neck, be unable to move until I starve to death, ditto, ditto? Or if I try to avoid being alone, will I fall in love, be conned, bankrupted, and left heartbroken? Will he murder me? Which would be worse?
I also sometimes have to stop myself thinking of floods, global freezing, solar flares taking out satellites, an international collapse of the power grid, hostile skirmishes, raids, nuclear war, the collapse of the economy, losing my job, the rise of the bullies, and being targeted because I am an outsider.
Most of the time, I’m completely relaxed but the fears – the fears seem to hiccup a little more often in these gloomy days as the media vultures teach us to wail their songs of terror at the moon. Will I eventually be after all hiding under the bed quaking?
Jump in any time and tell me to stop being silly, everything will be all right. I won’t believe you – in fact I’ll think you’re alarmingly naïve never ever to fear anything will ever touch your life – but jump in anyway.
I am self-diagnosing a need for food and maybe even a bubble-bath. I'm really not a basket-case. But man I can imagine up a world of troubles for myself sometimes.