Calm, cool, and collected

28 May

So much for being the calm, cool, and collected bride-to-be… 

I had a slight anxiety attack yesterday morning after I thought about everything I needed to do in the next five months for the wedding.  I started making a checklist for the wedding and I sent it to my family to look over and ensure that nothing was left off.  Two people who know a few things about weddings are my oldest sister and my mother, who both just planned my sister’s wedding two years ago.  They politely informed me that I needed to add a few things to the “to do” list and – poof!  – the list quadrupled in size within a few minutes! 

Although it’s in my nature to easily get overwhelmed, I don’t like the feeling of it, emotionally and physically.  Dealing with the symptoms of stress is just plain awful – the constant nagging feeling of worry, the tightness of the chest, the short breathes. I don’t like stressing out, period.  But sometimes I get caught up in the chaos and I have to bring myself back in check to normalcy.  So, I picked up the book that I’m currently reading, Benjamin Hoff’s The Te of Piglet, in hopes that it would tame the insanity make me feel better.  Lo and behold, the first page that I read stated this:

To the Taoist, unhappiness is the result of being guided by illusions…Problems, be they economical, ecological, or whatever, are caused by a failure to see What’s There.  Unpleasant feelings come from illusions: fear from What Might Be (which hasn’t happened yet), sadness from What Might Have Been (which is not necessarily what would have been), and so on. [People] living in fear of What’s Coming Next, What Can Go Wrong, What If I Do Something Foolish, and such, cannot enjoy and make the most of the present moment.

This paragraph jumped out at me because it described exactly what I was feeling – I was anxious and not happy because I was focusing too much on the What Might Be and not the present.  Another quote that follows the same theme as Hoff’s, comes from the book I just finished reading, Let the Great World Spin by Colum McCann:

There is still a point where the present, the now, winds around itself, and nothing is tangled. The river is not where it begins or ends, but right in the middle point, anchored by what has happened and what is to arrive.

I do understand that the whole point of planning a wedding is to prepare for a future event, but at the same time why not enjoy the present moment?  Remaining focused on the here and now and the entire point of why I’m planning this occasion (mine and Kevin’s commitment to one another) is key to staying calm, cool, and collected.

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