Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Life Events Stress

It's been stressful. Mildly.
You know how it is.
Life happens.
Sometimes it happens fun and sometimes it happens not-so-fun.
But my house didn't collapse under a mudslide after an earthquake.
Neither did my family disappear in the brilliant explosion of a terrorist bomb.
My business wasn't looted by thugs during an uprising.
I'm not worried about being dragged from my home in the night by rebels.
I've never had reason for a chemo needle.

Life is
by most of the worlds standards
very good.

I have access to clean water.
I've never gone hungry for lack of food.
I can carry my Bible and read it anywhere, any time I please.
I take walks along safe sidewalks around pretty parks and lakes.
My kids are all healthy, happy and gainfully employed.
My grandchildren are brilliant sparks of possibilities, kindness and talent.
There is music.
There are good books.
And I have a long list of friends
who reach out to me when I need them.

So it is with clear perspective I even agreed to take the Life Events stress test 
suggested to me by a friend.

"You've been through some stuff...."
"Well who hasn't. I'm fine."
"I know you're fine. You're always fine. But I'm worried about you anyway."

So I took the test.
Because I love my friends and I know they love me.
The test is a run down of a whole bunch of life events....not necessarily negative events, either....but events which are purported to have an effect on the level of stress a person is bearing....and how that level of stress may be correlated to the possibility of serious illness.
It is by no means an indication of surety
rather one of those little tools
which can be effectively used
as Oprah would say
for perhaps
an Ahhh-Haaa moment.

I have no health insurance.
That's one heck of an ahhh-haaa right there.
I guess, if for no other reason, I should at least see whether the 
statisticians think I'm going to stroke before Christmas.
It's the debilitating genetic gift of choice.
My people end up in hospitals
with half their face not working.
We're still quite loveable.
We just don't talk well at the end.
Which, if you know me
is going to be a serious problem.

So I took the test.
There are just a little under a zillion life events listed.
Loss of Spouse?
Fired From Job?
Serious Illness?
Time Spent in Jail?

And to each life event is attributed a point value.
I skated through on the events hovering around drug addiction and incarceration.
Feeling pretty confident, having never been fired from a job.
But then I hit MY life events
and my points started to add up.

Rather than detail it all out 
in all it's yawn-worthy glory
I'll just say my test
looks a little something like this.

I'm not that brunette anymore
other than in my memories
and old photos.
But those are sort of my shoulders.
And just a few of my life events.

Here's how it all adds up.

There you have it.
Apparently I've got one foot down in the ground
for a dirt nap.

Stay tuned.
If my posts all of a sudden stop.
And you see a sickly-sweet smelling
bouquet of gladiolas appear in the 
header of my page.
And you hear my kids arguing about
who gets my Buzz Lightyear lamp.

I guess I'd suggest you
take the test
and figure out how to get rid of all the stress.

Or I'll save a seat for ya up there
and we can finally relax and just sit back and chat about it all.
I'll be the one with a bottle of Baileys
a glass of ice
and a straw.

And I'll be laughing and grinning
thinking back
and telling everyone
I wouldn't have changed a thing.

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