Worry — How Can I Tell if I am Worrying?


I just listened to TLCS Podcast Ep #313 Pre-Traumatic Stress. Thank you so much for this, Brooke.

I am an anesthesiologist in an area where we have COVID+ patients, and one of whom (A 70 yo who contracted it from her son) already died.

Our medical community has not been overwhelmed (yet, and hopefully, not ever), but Pre-traumatic stress… the anticipatory grief.
It is real.

I remember in a prior podcast or webinar that Brooke mentioned that worry would be an indulgent emotion.

How can I tell when I am worrying?
Is there any good to worrying.. or is it indulgent to worry at all?

Personally, I haven’t found myself to be crippled Or stalled by the anxiety and the alarmist mode that I found myself in after the start of the pandemic.

I have acted non-stop in advocating for my brothers and sisters in healthcare for PPE, in voraciously reading all the information on coronavirus shared by the ASA (american society of anesthesiology) and CDC, in collaborating and creating ideas for makeshift PPE with other anesthesiologists across the country, in defending public health, and in protecting my own family and my relatives that live abroad while with the hat of a physician mom to a rambunctious 2 (almost 3) year old.

But I haven’t given myself a moment to cry until two days ago.

My coaching call with Lisa P was the first time I let myself have a big cry. It was really helpful.

But I haven’t been taking care of myself.
I unintentionally lost 5 lbs in a week and a half.
Minimal appetite.
I hadn’t been sleeping well (though that has improved).
Not healthy. And My husband is concerned.

The adrenaline is gone.
My body has relaxed
I’m in a better place, I think.
I’m as ready as I can be.
(COVID-19 can mutherfckn bring it.)

But I definitely still feel a bit on edge with anticipation of what’s to come.
I guess that’s worry.
But it’s hard for me to name… or to put a finger on what I’m feeling. I’m not sure I have a word for it.

If it’s worry, does it serve me?
It it’s anxiety, does it serve me?
What is this feeling?

Thank you so much for all the support that you provide. You are a beacon of light.