The world is a scarier place than it used to be. It's scarier because I make it that way. I watch or hear about; Dateline, Criminal Minds, CSI, Nancy Grace, Monsters Inside Me, Dr. Oz, The Doctors, Halloween, Chucky, Animal Planet, The Housewives of Wherever, the news, commercials, etc. There's practically nothing I do that doesn't scare me half to death anymore.
I'm not happy just scaring myself either - I keep my daughter scared as much as possible.
If she says, "Mom, I'm going down the street to Nikki's",
I will respond, "Watch out for murderous looking people!"
"Oh mom, you watch too many scary shows! I won't get murdered."
"Okay, okay, but if anyone approaches you, scream as loud as you can and run in the opposite direction that the vehicle is going."
"I knowwwwwwww MOM. You've told me that a hundred million times. I'm leaving!"
"Watch out for vans. Don't ever park next to a van. That's how they get you. You get out of your car and they open the side van door and pull you in. Stay away from vans - they are evil."
"I don't drive mom. (eye roll) I'm thirteen and ride a bike."
"Exactly my point! Don't ride next to a van. There are vans out there riding around looking for girls on bikes right this minute. I saw it on Dateline and Nancy Grace and I already knew it anyway. If you see a van, drive your bike into a ditch and lay low."
"Mom, my friends are going to leave without me if I don't hurry!"
"WAIT! If a dog approaches you, don't look him in the eye. Dogs think you are challenging them to a dual if you look 'em in the eye."
"WAIT! Somebody told me somebody said somebody saw a bear in the back of the subdivision. Do you know what to do if you see a bear?"
"No mom."(eye roll) "Can I just go?"
"Not until we talk about bear safety. I think you're supposed to pretend to be dead. You can do fake dead, just act like you do when I try to wake you up in the morning. Hold on, I'm thinking...hmmm...are you supposed to run or not run if that doesn't work? I think you're supposed to stand really tall and be a huge threat to the bear so it scares him away."
"I'm 5'2" mom, how big and scary is that?"
"Raise your arms really high. Jump up and roar at the bear just like you did to me when I wouldn't drive to Grandma's house for Thanksgiving dinner because of the deadly blizzard. You scared the daylights out of me and I'm pretty sure it would scare a bear too."
"How likely do you think it is that I'll get attacked by a bear riding my bike about 10 houses down the street?"
"Well you just never know. One was spotted. There's child molesters around here too. I mapped them out so look out for them. They don't all look scruffy and ugly either. He could be in a suit and be nice looking. He could be a she. Don't trust ladies either. Don't help anybody find any puppies. Don't go near ANY car for ANYTHING. If any car comes near you, scream and run as fast as you can, even if it's me because it might not be me."
"I could have been there by now."
"Do you have your cell phone?"
"Is it on?"
"Are you wearing your bullet proof vest?"
(eye roll)"Funny mom."
"I know we don't have a bullet proof vest but I could buckle you up in a life jacket in case somebody tries to shoot you. Run out in the garage and get one. A bright orange one so the hunters can see you too."
"Fine but don't breathe while you're down there. They smoke in the house. Dr. Oz says that for every four cigarettes that are smoked, Nikki is getting the same effect as if she were smoking one whole cigarette. There's two smokers there so every eight cigarettes, Nikki's smoking two and so are you so don't even go inside."
My daughter finally takes off on me so I run to the front window and watch her go all the way down the curving street. When she gets to be about the size of an ant, I know she's made it and then I still worry.
Then there's the scary movies. I watched Jack Nicholson in One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest the other night. Just looking at that guy's face scares me. I haven't seen the movie in years and it was kind of scary the way that big indian guy held him down with the pillow over his face and Mr. McMurphy's arms and legs were squirming all over and his body was flopping around like a fish.
A few nights later, the same exact thing happened to me. Coincidence? I was sound asleep when all of a sudden I woke up scared to death because I was being suffocated by that same indian - I just knew it!
My arms and legs started flailing around up in the air and I was bouncing off the wall and back onto the bed like the exorcist girl and trying to release his grip to save myself. I was terrified! I could not breathe at all! I was gasping for air. Then I opened my eyes in a wild terror and did not see the indian.
I use a cpap machine which pushes air into your throat so you don't stop breathing because of sleep apnea. I realized my cpap mask was covering my face and some killer must be in my house because he turned off my cpap machine in order to suffocate and kill me. I wondered if it was the indian. Then I looked and saw the cat sitting on the cpap on/off button. I pushed her aside and turned the cpap back on and went back to sleep.
When I woke up my stomach was not feeling right. Instead of just assuming it's probably the same stomach problems I've had for the past ten years, or just the stress of last night's attempted murder, I started wondering if there's a worm growing inside me. I saw it on an episode of "Monsters Inside Me" last night.
There was this guy who had stomach problems about the same amount of time I've had them. Our symptoms were even eerily alike. We both had terrible stomach aches! What a coincidence. Or is it a coincidence? He ended up having a huge worm growing inside him that was eating all his food so the guy was constantly hungry. They traced the worm back to when he had taken a drink out of a stream! Who knew?
"I've done that", I started thinking. I drank out of many streams when I was a kid. Maybe the worm's been growing in me that long! I sat still and tried to feel my worm moving. I put my hand on my belly the way you do when you're trying to feel the baby kick. I thought about drinking some hot sauce to kill the worm that might be in me but I thought the hot sauce would kill me instead of the worm because I cannot eat spicy foods.
How the hell was I gonna get rid of this damn worm? When I was a kid we used to find worm holes and pour mustard down them to get them to come out. Somebody said the mustard burned the worms and that's why they came out. I know it worked because we got a lot of worms for fishing. I wondered if I should drink some mustard. It would be better than hot sauce at least.
I tried to think like a worm. I got inside the worm's head like Reed and the rest of the team on Criminal Minds. I asked myself if I was the unsub worm in my stomach, what would make me leave? Maybe if another worm moved in that I didn't like. "This stomach's only big enough for one worm!", I would think to myself. I know I would because I don't like to share. The only problem is that I think I'd kick the new worm's ass and tell him I was there first.
If this happened, then there would be this huge battle going on in my stomach and my stomach problems would be ten times worse. Or even worse, what if the new worm and old worm fell in love and decided to mate? We are talking big trouble now.
Besides that, I couldn't eat a live worm anyway. (That's the only reason I'm not on Survivor.) In the end I left things as they are. If there's a worm in me, I need to keep him happy.
So my stomach was feeling a little better from not worrying about worms anymore and I turned on the TV. I watched a few drug commercials and realized I have all the symptoms they list for a few new diseases and I need to ask my Doctor for a bunch of medication. What's new? I change the channel and there's Dr. Oz. No way do I want to watch him tell me a bunch of other medical problems I have.
I turn on the news. The whole world is fighting and killing each other. Everybody's mad at everybody - it's like The Housewives of Atlanta and I'm very afraid of NeNe. I turn the TV off. I've had enough.
NeNe scares me but Dr. Oz makes my life hell. My mom loves Dr. Oz and watches him religiously. I was talking to her the other day about this and that and out of the blue she tells me that I need to be careful because I have poor circulation. "Really?" I ask her, "I do?" I ask her how she knows that when I don't know it and my Dr. doesn't know it.
Well, of course...she saw it on Dr. Oz. He's worse than the drug commercials. Between those and The Doctors, my mom has me diagnosed with so many problems, it's a miracle that I'm even alive. I can't tell you how many times she's called to tell me to "hurry up, hurry up - turn on Dr. Oz."
She lives in Florida, I live in Michigan. I've explained this to her a thousand times.
"Ma, do you realize you live in Florida?"
"He's talking about lumps. You know that lump you have in your leg?"
"Ma, Dr. Oz is not on at the same time here as it is in Florida. We have different cable companies, live in different states, and therefore have different channel line-ups and schedules. Remember I've told you that every time you call me?"
"I think your lump is a blood clot that will loosen, go to your heart, and kill you. Did you turn it on yet?"
"Yeah, I'm watching it right now Ma. I'll tell my doctor."
"Okay, don't forget though."
Between Dr. Oz and The Doctors, she drives me crazy. If the phone rings when those shows are on in Florida, I check caller ID and screen the calls if it's her. I can't get any sicker or more frightened than I am. I just can't take it.
I have to worry about myself, my daughter, and now my mom. I'm afraid of worms, blood clots, murderers, sex offenders, Chucky, rabid dogs, bears, cats, Jehovah's Witnesses - everyone and everything. I think I'm even afraid of being afraid. Coincidence?