CRANKING UP THE ANGST

 

Anxiety 2 Elizabeth Willis Barrett………January 2014

Signing up for classes at BYU in the pre-computer, pre-internet days of the 60’s was a wild and crazy procedure. I’m not sure if I can convey adequately the despair and anxiety that accompanied the process, but here is an attempt:

I stand in the BYU Field House clutching a paper labored over for days.  My blood is on this paper.  It is imprinted with a perfect schedule to get me through one more semester toward the glory of graduation with a degree in Home Economics Education.  I try to breathe deeply and calmly but I am ready to scream in hysterics because the cacophony in the Field House is blaring at my frazzled nerves.  The hustle and agitation of the huge room make me feel that I will never be fast enough or wily enough to get in the right lines to secure the necessary classes.  They are being taken up by others.   I stand in a long and winding queue only to arrive at a specific class registration table with an insensitive undergrad telling me that the last spot was just filled. I frantically attempt to find another class for the right hour and the right days and wait with high apprehension in another long serpentine line.  I groan deeply.  I can’t breathe.  The tears are coming.  I am missing out.  Things are happening without me.  I’m not going to make it!  All the classes will be gone and I will spend a semester just treading water.  Help!

I am reminded of this feeling as I sit at the computer.  An e-mail notification flashes across the top of the screen.  I check my e-mail and find that 116 messages have gone unread.  I try to catch up.  One informs me that I have a new blog-follower.  I check my blog.  Someone has commented.  I should answer.  Facebook is calling.  I check Facebook.  I go through the long lines of communication.  People are doing such exciting things. I am missing out.  Things are happening without me.  I should check Pinterest.  I’ve forgotten how to get there.  So many ideas, so little time.  I am behind.  Great recipes.  Stunning fashions.  Decorating projects.  Great deals are screaming at me.  I don’t want to miss out.  A bulletin appears that I should update Pages, my i-Cloud is full, the iTunes icon is bouncing.  I go to iTunes.  I upload the inserted CD and check the books waiting to be listened to.  So many books.  So little time.  My phone rings like a banjo.  I grab too late.    A text tiptoes in.  I stop to answer.  I check my words and hope my meaning is the meaning received.  Voice mail tritones.  I listen.  I don’t respond.  Instagram is neglected though that is where joy lies.  Help!  I am drowning!

Hmmm.  In retrospect, I don’t think this essay is about computers or no computers or about everyone getting ahead of me or not getting ahead of me.  I think this essay is about my tremendous ability to create anxiety in any situation.  I’m rather a queen in that area.  Just another dilemma I need to work on.  (Sigh!)

 

 

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7 comments on “CRANKING UP THE ANGST

  1. Terrie says:

    As always words well spoken. Thank you

  2. I miss you, Terrie! Do you know that we don’t have the Ballards or Coates anymore? I miss them, too!

  3. Karen Vanderwerf says:

    You make my day expressing what I feel too. Love those smith fields ousted registrations. NOT!!

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

  4. We have a great 4 member writing group that meets about twice a month. It keeps each of us writing and some really good stuff is coming out of it. If you lived close by, we would have you come talk to us about how you have gotten published!

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