There are scary bits of life. For everyone, but anxiods have an open channel for a very high frequency VHF kind of sensitivity to those scary parts.
This morning I was carting laundry up and down the stairs while the boys were at school and Amarys was playing in the hallway. She had a big fuzzy blanket from the living room, a board book, and a little people figurine. I went down, sorted a bit, and came up within 4 minutes. In the hallway, I saw the blanket in a huddle, and Amarys' feet poking out the end. Her head and body were completely covered, and her feet were really still. I called her name to make sure she was okay, and she didn't move.
That was probably my worst parenting moment with her so far. I really thought she was unconscious. I dropped the empty hamper I was carrying and yelled her name and dug around in the blanket to get to her face. THEN she moved her legs and peeked out from under the blanket and said, "Book?" She was just reading her book in the dark.
Pheeeeew. But now I'm battling my old tendency to go over and over it in my mind and plan out what I would have done if she'd been hurt.
I have determined that it is not so fabulous that I have seen so much as a paramedic, when it comes to the being anxious. But it is in fact fortunate and fabulous that I have, because when I saw her so still, I didn't feel helpless. I felt panicked but I knew exactly what to do, and was equipped to respond to the number of ways a toddler might manage to become unconscious in the upstairs hallway of their own house. [And I knew that the vast majority of the time, they are rescued and recover fully].
Toddlers. Shortening the lives of parents around the world, every day.